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9 Oscar Nominated Films We've Lost

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Although you’d be tempted to believe that all the films that have ever been nominated for Oscars—especially the ones that actually walked away with a little gold man—have been cherished, cared for, looked after, and tucked away for fans to enjoy for many years to come, you’d be wrong. Sadly enough, plenty of films are considered “lost,” and not in the “someone misplaced them somewhere but they’re probably okay” way, but more like “don't exist anywhere.”

The numbers on lost films are shocking—it’s believed that the majority of American silent films have been lost, and when it comes to the early years of sound films (from 1927 to 1950), it’s estimated that about half are lost (the use of 35mm “safety film” after 1950 has helped curb losses in a big way). Although campaigns remain in place to quite literally find and restore those lost films, it’s still slow going—and it’s no surprise that the Academy Film Archive is also in on the hunt with its “Oscar’s Most Wanted” search, because a few of its own honorees are currently still missing. 

1. Song of the Flame (1930)

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This Alan Crosland-directed musical drama hit the screen as an adaptation of the Oscar Hammerstein II and Otto A. Harbach Broadway operetta of the same name. The film was quite notably photographed entirely in Technicolor and was the very first color film to include a widescreen sequence, thanks to the Warner Bros. process known as “Vitascope.”

Clearly cutting-edge visually, the film was also a bit of a marvel in the sound department, and was nominated for a Best Sound Recording Oscar for the 3rd Academy Awards. The film is considered lost, but sound discs for five of its nine reels still exist (thanks to another Warner Bros. process, “Vitaphone,” which recorded the film’s soundtrack separately).

2. The Case of Sergeant Grischa (1930)

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It seems like 1930 might not have been a good year for the Best Sound Recording nominees, because yet another one of those Oscar hopefuls is also considered lost. No prints of the Herbert Brenon-directed drama (based on the German novel of the same name) are believed to exist, which may be a good thing—historical reviews of the film were not kind.

3. The Broadway Melody (1929)

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The first of a string of other MGM Broadway Melody films (three not-quite-sequels hit screens in 1936, 1938, and 1940 with similar plotlines), the 1929 Harry Beaumont musical—the studio's first—was a huge hit. The film wasn’t just commercially profitable, it was also the first sound film to win Best Picture (it also received nominations for Best Director and Best Actress).

Although the entire film has not been lost, a massive piece of it has—the production was one of the first to use a Technicolor sequence that helped spawn the trend in other musicals of the time. Said color sequence is presumed lost, and only a black and white version has survived.

4. The Private Life of Helen of Troy (1927)

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This Alexander Korda silent film has a few distinctions under its toga—it was nominated for an Academy Award in 1929 (the very first year of the Oscars) for an award that was given out just once. As the Oscars came into being during the transition between silent films and talkies, one particular award that only applied to silent films made its way into the first ceremony: Best Title Writing. The Private Life of Helen of Troy was nominated in the category, which honored those responsible for the intertitles that explained action between scenes. While writer Gerald Duffy didn’t win and died before the ceremony took place, he was the very first person to be posthumously nominated for an Oscar.

The entire film is not lost, but a large chunk of the middle is missing. As of now, the British Film Institute has managed to preserve two sections of the film (from its beginning and end) that run about half an hour long.

5. The Way of All Flesh (1927)

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A number of Victor Fleming’s silent films have been lost over the years, but his The Way of All Flesh has its own special distinction that sets it apart from the pack, even if it’s for a particularly sad reason.

Emil Jannings won the Best Actor award for his dramatic portrayal of a duped (and occasionally drunk) bank teller who falls very far from grace as the film winds on. Jannings’ win is notable for a number of reasons—he was the very first actor to win the accolade at the first ceremony and it was given to Jannings for two roles, not just one (he also received the award for his work in The Last Command)—but it’s also the only Academy Award-winning performance with no known copies (or even sections) available.

6. A Star is Born (1954)

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The Judy Garland-starring George Cukor classic notoriously had enough behind-the-scenes drama to satisfy even the most fiendish film trivia fan, but underneath all of its many personal dramas there was a far more technical snafu—the loss of many minutes of footage. Despite plenty of production trouble (including a switch from filming in WarnerScope to filming in CinemaScope after two entire weeks of production), the film’s first previews were a huge success. Which makes it all the more strange that Cukor chopped 15 minutes from the film before its premiere, including a bit from the “Born in the Trunk” sequence and plenty of non-musical drama.

While the musical segment has been restored and is included in recent home releases of the film, the other footage (including a number of scenes focused on James Mason’s Norman Maine character) is considered lost in its original form, despite many restoration efforts (the 1983 restoration of the film came with a “reconstructed” version of some scenes, using production stills and soundtrack).

The film was nominated for a slew of Oscars in 1954, including Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Original Song, and Best Original Score, though it did not walk away with any Oscars.

7. The Patriot (1928)

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Our friend Emil Jannings can’t seem to catch a break. This Ernst Lubitsch-directed semi-biographical tale of Czar Paul I starred Jannings as the mad czar, but like his other big lost film, The Way of All Flesh, no complete copies remain.

In fact, The Patriot is the only film nominated for Best Picture that does not have a complete surviving copy. While the film didn’t ultimately win at the 2nd Academy Awards, it was the only silent film nominated that year (it wasn’t until 2012 that another silent film was even nominated for the accolade, when The Artist took home the statuette). The film did win that year—pulling in the Oscar for Best Writing Achievement—to go alongside its other nominations for Best Actor, Best Art Direction, and Best Director.

As of now, the film’s trailer is preserved by the UCLA Film and Television Archive, and one reel of the film has been found and preserved by the Cinemateca Portuguesa.

8. Chase of Death (1949)

This nominee for the Best Short Subject, Two-reel Oscar (from 1936 until 1956, the Oscars differentiated between short films with “Two-reel” and “One-reel” sections; the award is now known as “Best Live Action Short Film”) is considered lost. The Academy Film Archive currently has a case file open for the film, and is actively looking for it.

9. The Kiss (1958)

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Another short, this 19-minute John Hayes film was nominated for Live Action Short back in 1958, but ultimately lost out to Disney’s Grand Canyon. The film marked a strong beginning for Hayes, who went on to direct a number of B-movie genre pictures, such as Walk the Angry Beach and Garden of the Dead. The Academy Film Archive is also actively searching for copies of the film.

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8 Tricks to Help Your Cat and Dog to Get Along
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When people aren’t debating whether cats or dogs are more intelligent, they’re equating them as mortal foes. That’s a stereotype that both cat expert Jackson Galaxy, host of the Animal Planet show My Cat From Hell, and certified dog trainer Zoe Sandor want to break.

Typically, cats are aloof and easily startled, while dogs are gregarious and territorial. This doesn't mean, however, that they can't share the same space—they're just going to need your help. “If cats and dogs are brought up together in a positive, loving, encouraging environment, they’re going to be friends,” Galaxy tells Mental Floss. “Or at the very least, they’ll tolerate each other.”

The duo has teamed up in a new Animal Planet series, Cat Vs. Dog, which airs on Saturdays at 10 p.m. The show chronicles their efforts to help pet owners establish long-lasting peace—if not perfect harmony—among cats and dogs. (Yes, it’s possible.) Gleaned from both TV and off-camera experiences, here are eight tips Galaxy and Sandor say will help improve household relations between Fido and Fluffy.


Contrary to popular belief, certain breeds of cats and dogs don't typically get along better than others. According to Galaxy and Sandor, it’s more important to take their personalities and energy levels into account. If a dog is aggressive and territorial, it won’t be a good fit in a household with a skittish cat. In contrast, an aging dog would hate sharing his space with a rambunctious kitten.

If two animals don’t end up being a personality match, have a backup plan, or consider setting up a household arrangement that keeps them separated for the long term. And if you’re adopting a pet, do your homework and ask its previous owners or shelter if it’s lived with other animals before, or gets along with them.


To set your dog up for success with cats, teach it to control its impulses, Sandor says. Does it leap across the kitchen when someone drops a cookie, or go on high alert when it sees a squeaky toy? If so, it probably won’t be great with cats right off the bat, since it will likely jump up whenever it spots a feline.

Hold off Fido's face time with Fluffy until the former is trained to stay put. And even then, keep a leash handy during the first several cat-dog meetings.


Cats need a protected space—a “base camp” of sorts—that’s just theirs, Galaxy says. Make this refuge off-limits to the dog, but create safe spaces around the house, too. This way, the cat can confidently navigate shared territory without trouble from its canine sibling.

Since cats are natural climbers, Galaxy recommends taking advantage of your home’s vertical space. Buy tall cat trees, install shelves, or place a cat bed atop a bookcase. This allows your cat to observe the dog from a safe distance, or cross a room without touching the floor.

And while you’re at it, keep dogs away from the litter box. Cats should feel safe while doing their business, plus dogs sometimes (ew) like to snack on cat feces, a bad habit that can cause your pooch to contract intestinal parasites. These worms can cause a slew of health problems, including vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, and anemia.

Baby gates work in a pinch, but since some dogs are escape artists, prepare for worst-case scenarios by keeping the litter box uncovered and in an open space. That way, the cat won’t be cornered and trapped mid-squat.


“People exercise their dogs probably 20 percent of what they should really be doing,” Sandor says. “It’s really important that their energy is released somewhere else so that they have the ability to slow down their brains and really control themselves when they’re around kitties.”

Dogs also need lots of stimulation. Receiving it in a controlled manner makes them less likely to satisfy it by, say, chasing a cat. For this, Sandor recommends toys, herding-type activities, lure coursing, and high-intensity trick training.

“Instead of just taking a walk, stop and do a sit five times on every block,” she says. “And do direction changes three times on every block, or speed changes two times. It’s about unleashing their herding instincts and prey drive in an appropriate way.”

If you don’t have time for any of these activities, Zoe recommends hiring a dog walker, or enrolling in doggy daycare.


In Galaxy's new book, Total Cat Mojo, he says it’s a smart idea to let cats and dogs sniff each other’s bedding and toys before a face-to-face introduction. This way, they can satisfy their curiosity and avoid potential turf battles.


Just like humans, cats and dogs have just one good chance to make a great first impression. Luckily, they both love food, which might ultimately help them love each other.

Schedule the first cat-dog meeting during mealtime, but keep the dog on a leash and both animals on opposite sides of a closed door. They won’t see each other, but they will smell each other while chowing down on their respective foods. They’ll begin to associate this smell with food, thus “making it a good thing,” Galaxy says.

Do this every mealtime for several weeks, before slowly introducing visual simulation. Continue feeding the cat and dog separately, but on either side of a dog gate or screen, before finally removing it all together. By this point, “they’re eating side-by-side, pretty much ignoring each other,” Galaxy says. For safety’s sake, continue keeping the dog on a leash until you’re confident it’s safe to take it off (and even then, exercise caution).


After you've successfully ingratiated the cat and dog using feeding exercises, keep their food bowls separate. “A cat will walk up to the dog bowl—either while the dog’s eating, or in the vicinity—and try to eat out of it,” Galaxy says. “The dog just goes to town on them. You can’t assume that your dog isn’t food-protective or resource-protective.”

To prevent these disastrous mealtime encounters, schedule regular mealtimes for your pets (no free feeding!) and place the bowls in separate areas of the house, or the cat’s dish up on a table or another high spot.

Also, keep a close eye on the cat’s toys—competition over toys can also prompt fighting. “Dogs tend to get really into catnip,” Galaxy says. “My dog loves catnip a whole lot more than my cats do.”


Socializing these animals at a young age can be easier than introducing them as adults—pups are easily trainable “sponges” that soak up new information and situations, Sandor says. Plus, dogs are less confident and smaller at this stage in life, allowing the cat to “assume its rightful position at the top of the hierarchy,” she adds.

Remain watchful, though, to ensure everything goes smoothly—especially when the dog hits its rambunctious “teenage” stage before becoming a full-grown dog.

10 Juicy Facts About Sea Apples

They're both gorgeous and grotesque. Sea apples, a type of marine invertebrate, have dazzling purple, yellow, and blue color schemes streaking across their bodies. But some of their habits are rather R-rated. Here’s what you should know about these weird little creatures.


The world’s oceans are home to more than 1200 species of sea cucumber. Like sand dollars and starfish, sea cucumbers are echinoderms: brainless, spineless marine animals with skin-covered shells and a complex network of internal hydraulics that enables them to get around. Sea cucumbers can thrive in a range of oceanic habitats, from Arctic depths to tropical reefs. They're a fascinating group with colorful popular names, like the “burnt hot dog sea cucumber” (Holothuria edulis) and the sea pig (Scotoplanes globosa), a scavenger that’s been described as a “living vacuum cleaner.”


Sea apples have oval-shaped bodies and belong to the genus Pseudocolochirus and genus Paracacumaria. The animals are indigenous to the western Pacific, where they can be found shuffling across the ocean floor in shallow, coastal waters. Many different types are kept in captivity, but two species, Pseudocolochirus violaceus and Pseudocolochirus axiologus, have proven especially popular with aquarium hobbyists. Both species reside along the coastlines of Australia and Southeast Asia.


Sea cucumbers, the ocean's sanitation crew, eat by swallowing plankton, algae, and sandy detritus at one end of their bodies and then expelling clean, fresh sand out their other end. Sea apples use a different technique. A ring of mucus-covered tentacles around a sea apple's mouth snares floating bits of food, popping each bit into its mouth one at a time. In the process, the tentacles are covered with a fresh coat of sticky mucus, and the whole cycle repeats.


Sea apples' waving appendages can look delicious to predatory fish, so the echinoderms minimize the risk of attracting unwanted attention by doing most of their feeding at night. When those tentacles aren’t in use, they’re retracted into the body.


The rows of yellow protuberances running along the sides of this specimen are its feet. They allow sea apples to latch onto rocks and other hard surfaces while feeding. And if one of these feet gets severed, it can grow back.


Sea apples are poisonous, but a few marine freeloaders capitalize on this very quality. Some small fish have evolved to live inside the invertebrates' digestive tracts, mooching off the sea apples' meals and using their bodies for shelter. In a gross twist of evolution, fish gain entry through the back door, an orifice called the cloaca. In addition expelling waste, the cloaca absorbs fresh oxygen, meaning that sea apples/cucumbers essentially breathe through their anuses.


Most full-grown adult sea apples are around 3 to 8 inches long, but they can make themselves look twice as big if they need to escape a threat. By pulling extra water into their bodies, some can grow to the size of a volleyball, according to Advanced Aquarist. After puffing up, they can float on the current and away from danger. Some aquarists might mistake the robust display as a sign of optimum health, but it's usually a reaction to stress.


Sea apples use their vibrant appearance to broadcast that they’re packing a dangerous toxin. But to really scare off predators, they puke up some of their own innards. When an attacker gets too close, sea apples can expel various organs through their orifices, and some simultaneously unleash a cloud of the poison holothurin. In an aquarium, the holothurin doesn’t disperse as widely as it would in the sea, and it's been known to wipe out entire fish tanks.


These invertebrates reproduce sexually; females release eggs that are later fertilized by clouds of sperm emitted by the males. As many saltwater aquarium keepers know all too well, sea apple eggs are not suitable fish snacks—because they’re poisonous. Scientists have observed that, in Pseudocolochirus violaceus at least, the eggs develop into small, barrel-shaped larvae within two weeks of fertilization.


Syzgium grande is a coastal tree native to Southeast Asia whose informal name is "sea apple." When fully grown, they can stand more than 140 feet tall. Once a year, it produces attractive clusters of fuzzy white flowers and round green fruits, perhaps prompting its comparison to an apple tree.


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