Time mag picks century’s top artists, entertainers

Editor sez list centers on 'not the best but the most most influential'

Bart Simpson, Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, T.S. Eliot and James Joyce were listed by Time magazine Sunday as among the century’s 20 top artists and entertainers.

Also on the list were Louis Armstrong, Lucille Ball, the Beatles, Marlon Brando, designer Coco Chanel, Charlie Chaplin, Bob Dylan, soul singer Aretha Franklin, dancer Martha Graham, Jim Henson, architect Le Corbusier, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Frank Sinatra, composer Igor Stravinsky and Pablo Picasso.

The magazine is compiling a list of the 100 most influential figures of the 20th century. Time managing editor Walter Isaacson said Spielberg got the nod because “we were looking for influence, and why we have to suffer through ‘Godzilla.’

“Spielberg made movies the way they are today. Our list is aimed at naming the people who influenced the way we live today, not the best but the most influential,” Isaacson said.

Bart Simpson, dubbed a “brat for the ages,” was picked as the most influential cartoon character over Mickey Mouse and Bugs Bunny and even Superman.

“There is a whole group of young people now with attitude and sharpness that comes from a Bart Simpson- approach to life. The Mickey Mouse Club is not in business. Mickey Mouse was wonderful but Bart Simpson rules today,” Isaacson said. The Time 100 list is a two-year project that will end with the naming of the century’s most influential person. Isaacson said he expected that person to be an optimistic choice ”because freedom won” and “the century is ending OK.”