“Forgotten Hollywood”- Another Evening With Groucho…

May 24th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Award-winning actor Frank Ferrante presents his acclaimed one-man comedy that celebrates one of cinema’s greatest comedian — Groucho Marx. You will feel Groucho is on stage as Ferrante sings, dances, tells stories, and performs classic routines and one-liners. Accompanied by his onstage pianist, Ferrante plays a young Groucho of stage and film.

“`Tales of the legendary Marx Brothers:  Chico, Harpo, and Zeppo; Groucho foil, Margaret Dumont; and Groucho’s Hollywood peers — Charlie Chaplin, Greta Garbo, W.C. Fields and MGM mogul Louis B. Mayer — are sprinkled throughout in a family-friendly program. An Evening with Groucho is presented June 12th and 13th at 7:30p.

“`Ferrante recreates his PBS, New York, and London acclaimed portrayal of the legendary comedian in this fast-paced ninety minutes of hilarity. The two-act comedy also includes a rendition of Lydia the Tattooed Lady. The audience becomes part of the show, as Ferrante intentionally ad-libs his way throughout the performance in grand Groucho style.

“`North Coast Rep’s Variety Night Theatre is always a blast, offering a mix of shows, from comedy nights to special one-night-only productions. The venue is located at 987 Lomas Santa Fe, Suite D, in Solana Beach; north of Del Mar, CA.

“`Groucho’s back… Hooray for Captain Spaulding!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Nobody Did It Better…

May 23rd, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“`Sir Roger Moore spent much of his screen career as  suave spies, such as Simon Templar and James Bond. On television,  Moore starred from 1962-1969 in The Saint; and on the big screen, he assumed the role of 007 from  Sean Connery in seven cinematic features. Named UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1991, Moore would be knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003, for services to charity.  In 2008, the French government appointed Moore Commander  (Ordre des Arts et des Lettres).                                  ROGER MOORE —>

“`Moore studied for two terms at  Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. He was a classmate of future Bond co-star Lois Maxwell, the initial Miss Moneypenny. He was an extra in the Vivien Leigh/Claude Rains 1945 vehicle Caesar and Cleopatra. Stardom did not arrive easily, however.

“`The Brit toiled as a working actor in television and films in the United Kingdom. In the early 1950s, he became a print advertisements model. Finally, Hollywood came calling.

“`Although, Moore signed a seven-year contract with MGM in 1954,  the movies that followed were seldom profitable. Roger co-starred in Interrupted Melody; cast behind Eleanor Parker and Glenn Ford.  He was released from his MGM contract after only two years. Other films he appeared include The Wild Geese, The Cannonball Run, Curse of the Pink Panther, and Shout at the Devil. On television, he starred in Ivanhoe, Maverick, and The Persuaders.

“`Because of commitments to the long-lasting series, The Saint, Moore was not available for the James Bond franchise for a considerable time. As the longest serving James Bond to date, he starred in  Live and Let Die, The Man with the Golden Gun, The Spy Who Loved Me, Moonraker, For Your Eyes OnlyOctopussy, and A View To a Kill.

“`Moore’s friend Audrey Hepburn had impressed him with her work for UNICEF, and consequently, he became a Goodwill Ambassador in 1991. He was the voice of Father Christmas in the UNICEF – The Fly Who Loved Me. Recently, Moore was involved with a children’s fairytales app, GivingTales, for UNICEF, together with a number of other British celebrities, including Michael Caine, Stephen Fry, Ewan McGregor, Joan Collins, and Charlotte Rampling.

“`He penned a reader based on his diaries – Roger Moore as James Bond: Roger Moore’s Own Account of Filming Live and Let Die was published in London in 1973 by Pan Books. The book includes an acknowledgment to Connery with whom he remained close for countless years. Bond On Bond was published as a tie-in to the 50th anniversary of James Bond flicks. It’s based on Moore’s own memories, thoughts, and anecdotes about 007.

“`Not thinking of himself as much of an actor; he was a skilled performer, who inspired much adoration from his audience. Roger Moore was 89.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Death of a Socialite…

May 22nd, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Dina Merrill was an actress, heiress, socialite, businesswoman and philanthropist. She was the only child of  Post Cereals heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post, and her second husband was the Wall Street stockbroker Edward Francis (E.F.) Hutton. She was also related to Glenn Close.

“`Dina attended George Washington University; then dropped out and enrolled at American Academy of the Dramatic Arts in Manhattan. Merrill made her Broadway debut in The Mermaid Singing in 1945; then appeared  in George Washington Slept Here.

“`During the 1950s and 1960s, Merrill was intentionally marketed, and was called Hollywood’s next Grace Kelly. Her film credits included  Desk Set, The Sundowners, Operation Petticoat (with Tony Curtis and Cary Grant, who was wed to her cousin Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton),  The Courtship of Eddie’s Father,  I’ll Take Sweden,  Butterfield 8,  The Greatest, True Colors, Caddyshack II,  a remake of Mighty Joe Young, and The Player. In 1991, Merrill and her third husband Ted Hartley merged their company with a movie studio that owned the copyright to film and intellectual property of RKO Radio Pictures).                 DINA MERRILL –>

“`Merrill appeared regularly as a guest star on numerous television series in the 1960s, most notably as villain Calamity Jan in two 1968 episodes of Batman alongside then-husband Cliff Robertson. Dina also made appearances on  Dr. Kildare, RawhideThe Phil Silvers Show, Playhouse 90, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour,  Daniel Boone, Daktari, Run For Your Life, BonanzaMedical Center, The Name of the Game, The Virginian, Marcus Welby M.D., Mission:  Impossible, The F.B.I.The Odd Couple, Night Gallery, Ellery Queen, Hotel, Hawaii 5-0The Love Boat, Quincy M.E., Murder She Wrote, and Roseanne.

“`Dina was a presidential appointee to the Board of Trustees of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; trustee of Eugene O’Neill Theater Center; and vice president of New York City Mission Society. In 2005, she received a  Lifetime Achievement Award from American Academy of the Dramatic Arts. When son, David, was diagnosed with diabetes, she was inspired to establish the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation.

“`Dina Merrill was 93.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Grauman’s Chinese Theatre Turns 90

May 18th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`A symbol of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Grauman’s Chinese Theatre is turning 90. Today,  known as the TCL Chinese Theatre, the landmark movie palace first opened on May 18th, 1927, and it’s been hosting movies, actors, and fans, ever since. Films such as King Kong, The Wizard of Oz, and Star Wars have all had their premiere at this glamorous locale.

“`Sid Grauman’s masterpiece cinema house stands on a  bustling corner of Hollywood Blvd., next door to the Dolby Theatre where the Oscars are now presented; and across from the historic Roosevelt Hotel, where the first Oscars’ ceremony was held in 1929. A Hollywood take on a Chinese temple, it boasts a pagoda-shaped roof, ornate marble carvings, plus the cement forecourt, filled with celebrity footprints. The theater still hosts dozens of premieres each year, and its iconic footprint forecourt draws an estimated five million tourists annually from around the world. Ticket prices have risen, however. It cost 75 cents to see a movie in 1927. An IMAX 3-D screening today runs $22.75.

“`A showman and entrepreneur, Grauman started building the Chinese Theatre in 1926, the same year he and other Hollywood titans established the  Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  He imagined an elegant and otherworldly cinema palace that would transport visitors to ancient China, with its serene gardens and regal temples.

“`Silent film star Norma Talmadge came to see Sid at his new building on Hollywood Blvd., when she accidentally stepped in wet cement, out front.  Inspiration took hold…  Grauman believed celebrity footprints would be a fun way to promote his new theater.  He welcomed  friends and business partners, Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks, to purposely put their hands and feet in wet cement, and the tradition was born. More than 300 actors, directors, and producers have followed suit. Alien:  Covenant director Ridley Scott added his prints, recently.

“`There are two time capsules buried beneath the forecourt. The first was planted in 1942 to mark the release of Mrs. Miniver, which won six Oscars. Beneath Greer Garson’s prints is a capsule containing a copy of the script and a 35-milimeter print of the film. A second capsule commemorates the theater’s 50th anniversary. Buried in 1977, it holds a theater ticket, a 16-milimeter print of a Chinese film, and a program from opening night in 1927.

“`The city of Los Angeles declared the splendid theater a historic-cultural monument in 1968. It underwent the biggest renovation in its history in 2013, to create stadium seating, and add a state-of-the-art IMAX screen — the only one in the world with an old-fashioned curtain that opens just before the feature presentation.

“`The company plans to expand the brand around the world, with a San Diego location set to open later this year. But, for countless tourists and celebrities, past and present, the  Chinese Theatre will always stay on Hollywood Boulevard, representing the Golden Age of Cinema.

Until next time>                              “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Riverside Approves ‘The Cheech’…

May 17th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`The Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Art, Culture, and Industry – which people already have nicknamed  The Cheech – is officially a go for the Downtown-area of Riverside. Their local  city council approved to replace their downtown library with a cultural center, displaying Marin’s renowned  700-piece Mexicano art collection. A third-generation Latino-American, he hopes the art center  will be accessible to five universities in the area.

“`Residents burst into applause after the vote, and their comments reflected excitement and anticipation of how the Marin Center could raise the city’s profile, and showcase a culture the art world has neglected.

“`The agreement gives the city, Marin, and  Riverside Art Museum up to a year, to raise $3 million of an estimated $5 to $7 million, the project is expected to cost. The city will continue to own the building, Marin will lend his art,  and the art museum will staff and run the center. Measuring about 60,000 square feet, the edifice is the current home to the Riverside Public Library, which plans to vacate the structure and move a few blocks away.

“`Melissa Richardson Banks, who manages Marin’s art collection, said Cheech couldn’t attend the council meeting, because he is in Atlanta filming a movie. However, he texted her hourly, hoping for a decision. The vote was unanimousAfter the vote, Banks stood at a lectern, and put her cell phone to the microphone, so Marin could express his thoughts.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Cue the Violin…

May 16th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`English violinist Wallace Hartley was the leader of musicians who had the job of entertaining the passengers on the RMS Titanic. But, they ended up playing music, in order to keep people calm, while the ship sank.  Wallace’s torso was recovered, two weeks later, with his violin case still strapped to his corpse.

                               WALLACE HARTLEY

“`After the death of the violinist, the instrument was sent back to England to his fiancé Maria Robinson.  When Maria died in 1939, her sister gave that violin to Bridlington Salvation Army. And, she shared the complete chronicle behind the instrument’s history to its representatives. Years later, it became the possession of a music teacher. He then handed the violin to friends, whose son found the instrument in his attic in 2006.

“`The discovery caught the attention of  Henry Aldridge & Son auction house, which began an investigation in order to confirm the authenticity of the instrument. It took seven years to gather evidence; and, another two years of forensic analysis, before proclaiming the violin to be the original one, owned by Wallace Hartley. The announcement was made in March, 2013. A leather case engraved with the initials W.H.H. was also analyzed.

“`Once the authenticity of this instrument was proven, Henry Aldridge & Son sold the violin to an unidentified buyer on October 19th, 2013. The initial price was set at $65,000. However, their bids surpassed all expectations; eventually bought for $1.7 million. It was later exhibited in Belfast, Northern Ireland at the shipyard where the Titanic was constructed; before making a trip to the United States for publicly display.

“`Wallace Hartley was hesitant to spend time away from his fiancé to join Titanic’s crew. But, in pursuit of future employment contracts, he decided to work on the ocean liner with his ensemble. Each cinematic production about the doomed ship faithfully recount his steadfast last hours, including the stoic British version — A Night to Remember.

“`His body was received by his father in Liverpool,  who traveled back to their hometown of Colne, Lancashire. Hartley’s funeral was held on May 18th, 1912, and was attended by over a thousand people, while approximately 40,000 more waited in line to pay their respects. A ten-foot headstone was erected above his grave site at Keighley Road Cemetery, with an opulent carved violin at its base.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Remembering Powers Boothe…

May 15th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Powers Boothe was a veteran actor who won an Emmy in 1980 for playing a cult leader in the television movie, Guyana Tragedy: The Story of Jim Jones. He was prolific in playing intense villains on screen.

“`After graduating from Southwest Texas State University, Boothe joined the repertory  company of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.  His Manhattan stage debut was in the 1974 Lincoln Center production of Richard III. Five years later, his Broadway debut came in a starring role in the one-act play Lone Star.

“`Boothe joined the ranks of Humphrey Bogart, Dick Powell, Robert Mitchum, and other actors, when he played Phillip Marlowe for HBO  in the 1980s. Other cable and television appearances included roles in Deadwood,  24, Hatfields & McCoys,  Nashville, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  Powers also appeared on the big screen, with parts in  The Goodbye Girl,  Southern Comfort, Tombstone, Con Air, Nixon (as Alexander Haig), and Sin City.   POWERS BOOTHE —>

“`In 2008,  he narrated a television campaign ad for  Senator John McCain’s presidential run. Boothe maintained a private collection of art, which included Western paintings of his friend and fellow actor, Buck Taylor.

“`Powers Boothe, a ferocious presence on screen, died peacefully in his sleep. He was 68.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Book Series Reaches 5000 in Sales…

May 14th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History and  Son of Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History has reached a monumental milestone, nine (9) years in the making. I have been told by literary experts:  Every book you self-publish should reach in sales…  400 450 (average), to be considered a success. Coincidentally, 900 purchases for a combined two-book series will allow you to approximately break even, in terms of expenses.

   

“`A majority of my book purchases, over the years, have been made by many friendly folks of Southern California. However, my work is distributed nationally as a paperback, and an eBook. I also have visited Reno, Las Vegas, Chicago, Milwaukee, Miami, Manhattan, and The Bronx in order to initially reach my goal of breaking even as a Self Published Author.

“`Today, on May 13th, 2017, I surpassed 5000 in combined book sales for my award-winning  Forgotten Hollywood Book Series.  The event that put my non-stop efforts over the top was Saturday’s Daily Breeze Successful Aging Expo in Torrance, CA.

“`All of these statistics bode well, with an impending third paperback to add to the collection in the Forgotten Hollywood Book Series; due out soon. Plus, this fine journey includes the Forgotten Hollywood weekly Radio Program; a Cable Podcast; and an award-winning Blog Site (with almost 1700 posts, since 2009).

“`And, so it goes…

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Meal With Herve…

May 13th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`HBO has green-lighted a production about Herve Villechaize. He was the actor who played Tattoo on television’s Fantasy Island.

“`My Dinner with Herve will star Peter Dinklage of Game of Thrones as Villechaize. Fifty Shades of Grey star Jamie Dornan will portray a journalist who interviews the tempestuous actor. HBO writer and director Sacha Gervasi interviewed Villechaize shortly before he died.

“`His shout of The plane, the plane… greeted arriving guests during the 1977-1983 series  Fantasy Island. His co-star was Ricardo Montalban. Popular with the public, Herve Villechaize (right) was difficult on the set. Clashing repeatedly with producers, he was let go in 1983 over a salary dispute. The program was canceled in 1984.

“`Herve remained a well-known figure after his dismissal from the show. He was cast as villain Nick Nack in 1974’s James Bond film, The Man with the Golden Gun.

“`The 3-foot-11 Villechaize endured many health problems, and passed away in 1993 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at age 50.

=================================

“`NBC is adding another live musical to its slate. The network will air the rock opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, on Easter Sunday, 2018.

“`Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice  will be the executive producers of Jesus Christ Superstar Live!  NBC has aired live productions of Peter Pan, The WizThe Sound of Music and Hairspray. On tap for NBC is Bye Bye Birdie in December, starring Jennifer Lopez.

“`Jesus Christ Superstar, originally conceived as a concept album, opened on Broadway in 1971 with Ben Vereen.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Disneyland in the First Trimester…

May 12th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Tomorrowland was originally called World of Tomorrow. Frontierland was Frontier Country. Lilliputian Land never came to fruition at Disneyland. And, Star Wars Land opening in 2019 was creative folly.

“`Walt Disney spent a marathon weekend in 1953 brainstorming ideas for a family amusement park, called Disneyland. There would be a Train Station and old-fashioned Main Street Square. The park would have a princess castle, a pirate ship, and maybe even a rocket. Disney wanted to get investors on board. Walt described the elements he imagined to artist Herb Ryman, who translated them into a hand-drawn map — conceptual origins of a Disneyland theme park.

                   WALT DISNEY

 “`The famous Sleeping Beauty Castle that sits in the center of the park is displayed further back in the concept sketch. The Matterhorn Bobsleds and the Monorail were added in 1959. The Enchanted Tiki Room opened in 1963. It’s a Small World arrived in 1966, followed with Pirates of the Caribbean in 1967. The official Disneyland Hotel opened in 1988. A new park, Disney California Adventure, and accompanying Grand Californian Hotel, added in 2001.

“`None of those elements were part of Ryman’s 1953 sketch. It is hard to compare designs from the original map with what actually exists in the park, today.

“`For the auctioneer, whose Van Eaton Galleries are full of Disney animation cells, old park souvenirs, and even, a googly-eyed sea monster from the now-shuttered Submarine Voyage ride, the pre-Disneyland map is treasure. After spending the past four decades locked away in a vault, the map is being showcased in a public viewing at the gallery prior to the auction.

“`It could be yours. That original concept art could fetch as much as $1 million when it goes up for auction, next month.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Seven Days in May…

May 11th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Art imitating life… Truth is stranger than fiction.  Dateline: 05/11/2017

“`A Pentagon insider, working with intelligence,  initiates surveillance on the President of the United States. The result is an attempted coup by the military at the highest levels, because the Executive Branch is cozy with the Soviet Union. The head of the Joint Chief of Staff fails, and is forced to resign; in essence, he is dispatched. I’m not referring to any shenanigans of the 2017 presidential administration. It is a literary narrative written in 1962.

“`Seven Days in May was loosely based on actual facts, and reflected the political climate of the day. In 1961, President John F. Kennedy had accepted the resignation of vociferous anti-Communist,  General Edwin Walker,  who was indoctrinating troops under his watch with his radical views; and described former President Harry Truman, former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt, former Secretary of State Dean Acheson, and other public figures, as Russian sympathizers.

“`The production was directed by John Frankenheimer; and it starred Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Fredric March, Edmond O’Brien, and Ava Gardner. The screenplay was adroitly adapted by Rod Serling, based on the book by Fletcher Knebel and Charles W. Bailey II.

“`President Kennedy had read Seven Days in May shortly after its publication, and believed the described scenario could actually occur in the United States. According to Frankenheimer, he received encouragement and assistance from JFK, through Press Secretary Pierre Salinger, who conveyed the president’s desire that it be produced. The exterior of the White House was even made available. But, the Pentagon was vehemently against the completion of this movie.

“`The motion picture was released three months after the assassination of President Kennedy, in February, 1964, and opened to wonderful reviews. Critics called it a thrilling piece of fiction.

“`In the final analysis, the visionary aspects of a smartly-written screenplay is consequential. Consider Citizen KaneA Face in the Crowd, Network, and now, Seven Days in May.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Catalina Island Annual Screening…

May 10th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`The Catalina Island Museum  Silent Film Benefit provides an authentic 1920s movie experience in the historic Avalon Casino Theatre.  This year, enjoy a screening of the 1924 production of Peter Pan. The New York Times has referred to it:  A pictorial masterpiece. The benefit is in its 30th year.

“`This is the first film version of J.M. Barrie’s play of the same name. Betty Bronson stars as Peter Pan. This was called one of the greatest children’s movies ever made. Plus, it was partially filmed on Catalina Island.

“`Award-winning composer and sound designer, Michael Mortilla, and a group of musicians, will provide the live orchestral accompaniment. They will perform an original score, written by Mortilla specifically for this event.

“`Attend the Silent Film Benefit in a period outfit, and you could win a prize for best-dressed individual or best-dressed couple. A prize will also be awarded to the best character from the film. Judging will occur upon arrival.

“`A member’s Pre-Performance Talk prior to the Silent Film Benefit. Special guest Cathy Rigby, who starred as Peter Pan on Broadway from 1991 to 1998, will talk about her experiences and answer questions. A group of theater students from McCoy Rigby Conservatory of the Arts will also perform.

“`The event is Saturday, May 20th at 1p. Tickets are $25 for members; $28 for non-members; and $10 for children (ages 3 – 15).

=================================

“`Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is considering building a gondola that would transport passengers to the summit of Mount Lee, behind the Hollywood Sign. Riders would board near Universal Studios, and be swooped into the air with great views over Lake Hollywood. The aerial tram would be a tourist attraction and a way of reducing traffic in neighborhoods near the sign.

“`What fun this would be!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Ronald McDonald Statue Returned…

May 9th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`A Ronald McDonald  statue that was stolen from a  McDonald’s in New Jersey last month has been found.  But, authorities are keeping mum about where it was found, and who took it.  The iconic life-size statue of the clown sitting on a park bench has welcomed customers for over two decades.

“`Hunterdon County prosecutors say the 250-pound fiberglass statue was taken from a  McDonald’s located in the hamlet of Clinton. They announced that it had been found but declined to comment further. A $500 reward had been offered for information about the theft.

“`Restaurant owners Phil and Diane Koury say the statue wasn’t damaged. They plan to move it to a secure location, and will have it refurbished and repainted as part of ongoing restaurant renovations. This Center Street McDonald’s location is scheduled to reopen Friday, May 12th, with an official event in the middle of June.

“`Ronald McDonald was created around 1963 when a McDonald’s location in Washington, D.C. decided to boost its business by sponsoring Bozo’s Circus, a local children’s program, featuring future Today Show weatherman Willard Scott.

“`Today, the popular clown is a fan of my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series.

“`One last thought… I wonder if the Hamburglar has an alibi with regards to the alleged theft?  Bulletins as they break…

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- AFI Honors Diane Keaton…

May 8th, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“`Diane Keaton will receive American Film Institute’s highest honor next month.  AFI has announced the actress is accepting its  45th Life Achievement Award during a gala tribute in Los Angeles on June 8th.

“`The 71-year-old Keaton won an Academy Award for playing the title character in Annie Hall, and she has garnered three other Best Actress Oscar nods. Recent recipients of AFI’s Life Achievement Award include George Lucas, Tom Hanks, Meryl Streep, Mel Brooks, and Jane Fonda.

“`The star-studded event airs on TNT in June.    DIANE KEATON —>

============================================ 

“`Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell (right)  were honored with neighboring stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They’ve been a loving couple for over 30 years. They were joined by Hawn’s daughter, Kate Hudson.

“`Russell began his career as a member of the Disney stable of stars of family cinema.  Hawn became a television star on Rowen and Martin’s Laugh-In. She won an Oscar for her performance in Cactus Flower.

“`Reese Witherspoon brought out Hawn. Quentin Tarantino introduced Russell.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Passing Parade Claims Fine Actor…

May 7th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Don Gordon was a prolific player in motion pictures and television. He was also a personal friend of Steve McQueen. His pal offered him parts in Bullitt, Papillon, and The Towering Inferno. Twice, he guest starred on McQueen’s CBS Western, Wanted: Dead or Alive. He additionally played Lt. Frank Bertelli in over 30 episodes of Blue Angels.

“`After Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, Gordon decided to join the Navy. Despite being only 15 at the time, he served on both the USS Saratoga and the USS Yorktown. After the war ended, he began his acting career.  Don started as an extra in the early 1950s; receiving his initial screen credit as a guest star on the television show Space Patrol.

“`Gordon was a reliable actor, and he made several appearances on television in The Twilight ZonePeyton Place, The F.B.I., The Untouchables, and The Outer Limits. Don also appeared  on  77 Sunset StripMannixThe Streets of San Francisco, The Invaders,  The FugitiveThe Wild Wild West, Combat, Voyage to the Bottom of the SeaThe Bionic Woman, T. J. HookerKnight Rider, Hart to Hart, The Dukes of Hazzard, Charlie’s Angels,  Remmington SteeleStarsky and Hutch, MacGyver, and Columbo. He earned an Emmy nomination for a memorable performance in The Defenders.

“`On the big screen, Gordon was cast in Twelve O’Clock High, Halls of Montezuma, The Benny Goodman Story, It’s a Big Country,  The Omen III,  Lethal Weapon, and The Exorcist III. Fittingly, his last credited screen work was the documentary Steve McQueen – The Essence of Cool in 2005.

“`Don donated some of his career earnings to Lange Foundation, an animal rescue, care, and placement facility.

“`Don Gordon was 90.

Until next time>                               “never forget”