Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon

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Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon is a trivia game based on the concept of the small world phenomenon and rests on the assumption that any individual can be linked through his or her film roles to actor Kevin Bacon within six steps. The game requires a group of players to try to connect any individual to Kevin Bacon as quickly as possible and in as few links as possible. The name of the game is a paraphrase of the "six degrees of separation" concept. In 2007, Bacon started a charitable organization named SixDegrees.org.

Contents

History

In a February 1994 Premiere magazine interview about the film The River Wild, Kevin Bacon commented that he had worked with everybody in Hollywood or someone who's worked with them.

Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon first surfaced at about the same time. On April 7, 1994, a lengthy newsgroup thread headed "Kevin Bacon is the Center of the Universe" appeared.[1]

The game was created in early 1994 by three Albright College students, Craig Fass, Brian Turtle, and Mike Ginelli. According to an interview with the trio in the spring 1999 issue of the college's magazine, The Albright Reporter, they were watching Footloose during a heavy snowstorm. When the film was followed by The Air Up There, they began to speculate on how many movies Bacon had been in and the number of people he had worked with.

In the interview, Brian Turtle said, "It became one of our stupid party tricks, I guess. People would throw names at us, and we'd connect them to Kevin Bacon."

The trio wrote talk show host Jon Stewart a letter telling him that "Kevin Bacon was the center of the entertainment universe" and explaining the game.[2] They appeared on The Jon Stewart Show and The Howard Stern Show with Bacon to explain the game. Bacon admitted that he initially disliked the game because he believed it was ridiculing him, but he eventually came to enjoy it. The three inventors released a book, Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon (ISBN 9780452278448), with an introduction written by Bacon.[2] A board game based on the concept was released by Endless Games.

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