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The Failures Of… Steven Spielberg

The Tragic Tale of Pop.com


You may think of Cinema God Steven Spielberg as having the magic touch. Anything he touches turns to gold, right? Wrong? Even the director of ET, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jaws, and Jurassic Park has failed?

When? How? Is that even possible?


One such event was a project called Pop.com. Spielberg was partnered with Ron Howard, another golden boy who’s films have made billions. These two magic men were the brainchildren of pop.com. A company that existed around 1998, envisioning a venue for streaming short media. Naturally, everyone wanted to get involved. Stars signed up to contribute to Pop.com. Paul Allen invested $16 million in this sure fire hit. A building was rented, stuffed with staff, desks, telephones, and so on. The only thing missing was Pop.com itself. What was it?


Even the staff didn’t know. On the day it was announced, there wasn’t even a website. Pop.com remained a mystery even until the day the dot.com bubble erupted. Even today, its difficult to say what the vision behind “Pop.com” was. Perhaps, it was too ahead of its time. Only two years later, a site called YouTube appeared and dominated the short media needs of the world. Spielberg and Howard wisely distanced themselves from the titanic of Pop.com, pouring their creative juices into films like “The Da Vinci Code” and “Minority Report.”

The next time you fail at something, just remember that Spielberg once lost 16 million dollars with this too ahead of its time venture.

Written by: Norith Soth

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