Bacon Number

Bacon Number

So the lecture was interesting this week, with the discussion on the Bacon number.

I’d seen this already when Google made it possible to type in any actors name followed by Bacon number and show the results of the calculation.

It’s the ¬†degrees of separation with Kevin Bacon at the centre. The theory is that every actor has no more than 6 links to Kevin Bacon via the films they have starred in. What I find interesting is the persons desire to beat the system. A network that has been created years ago, and the first thing people do when they hear of it is type in someone like Bryan Cranston, to see if they can get over 6.

Kevin Bacon’s network is huge. Its because of the amount of actors he’s worked with over his career. He has worked on so many Hollywood films that he’s worked with actors from all eras, which are connected to actors who may have passed away before he was even alive.

For fun, I decided to see what Clooney’s network would look like, and it’s better than Bacon’s. There are many more whose average is better than Bacon’s. Streep, Caine, Morgan Freeman, Denzel, Helen Mirren. The list can go on and on, but I think that Bacon was just the first person the creators thought of who has been in a lot of movies, so far enough.

The most interesting thing that I found when looking into the mythical Bacon number, was that a man spent 8 years in a networking experiment where he sent out 300 emails to actors asking to take their picture (portrait). One responded and then that actor sent him onto another actor. Eventually he got to an actor who referred him to Kevin Bacon. He made an exhibition about it, which can be bought on his website (aparently, according to this website)