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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Mormon World Records 5

by Seattle Jon (bio)

Paul Skousen might not be the best known of the Skousens, but he did pen The Skousen Book of Mormon World Records. This is my tribute series to his good work. Previous Mormon World Records here.

Note: This version of MWR is Hollywood-themed to celebrate the ending of the awards season.

QWho was the first Mormon movie star?
A: John Gilbert was born July 10, 1897, in Logan, Utah, into an LDS home and environment but didn't practice the religion as an adult. One of the first movie stars in Hollywood history, he became known as the "Great Lover of the Silver Screen." One movie critic called him the "Tom Cruise of the silent era." One list of the 100 most influential people in cinema ranked him number 28. He appeared in more than 100 films and is best known for his role in The Big Parade (1925), one of the last great silent films. It was the top box office earner until Gone With The Wind. He drank himself to death in 1936.

QWhat is the longest Book of Mormon quote used in a Hollywood film?
A: Alfred Hitchcock's Family Plot features the longest quote from the Book of Mormon in a major motion picture. During a funeral scene, a priest is heard reading verbatim eight verses (20-27) from 2 Nephi 9. Some of the producers and writers who collaborated with Hitchcock were LDS, and their influence can be spotted in several of his masterpieces.

QWhat was the strangest casting choice for a Mormon?
A: When an actor was needed in 1940 to portray the Prophet Joseph Smith in a feature-length movie, Brigham Young - Frontiersman, Hollywood producers chose somebody to help draw crowds: king of horror films, Mr. Vincent Price.

QWhat was the most money won by a Mormon on a TV game show?
A: In June 2004, Ken Jennings, 30, shattered records for the quiz show Jeopardy. Brother Jennings, a returned missionary from Madrid, defended his championship for 74 consecutive games, winning a total of $3,172,700. At BYU he was once ranked seventh in the nation among college quiz bowl teams.

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