“Forgotten Hollywood”- An Author of Note…

July 18th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Two hundred years to the day after Jane Austen died, a new 10-pound note featuring an image of one of England’s most revered authors has been unveiled — right where she was buried. At the unveiling of the new tenner at Winchester Cathedral in southern England, Bank of England Governor Mark Carney said – it highlights a universal appeal of Austen’s work.

“`Austen, whose novels included Pride and Prejudice, Emma, and Sense and Sensibility, is widely considered as a perceptive chronicler of English country life during the Georgian era. Combining wit, romance, and social commentary,  her books have been adapted a number of times in movies and television.

“`The new note, due to go into circulation on September 14th,  is the bank’s latest effort to make its notes more secure by using plastic, not paper. It’s printed on polymer, just like the recently re-launched 5-pound note, which features Winston Churchill. A new 20-pound note will feature landscape painter J.M.W. Turner, and is scheduled for 2020. The latest note also includes a new tactile feature to assist the visually impaired;  developed in conjunction with Royal National Institute of Blind People.

“`Apart from Queen Elizabeth II,  whose portrait is on all United Kingdom currency, Austen is only the third woman to appear on the modern-day British bank note, after medical innovator Florence Nightingale and social reformer Elizabeth Fry. Austen was chosen during a campaign for more female representation.

“`Those holding the current 10-pound note, which features Charles Darwin, have only until the Spring, 2018 before they are withdrawn.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Disney Villains in the Spotlight…

July 17th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`The United States Postal Service will celebrate the rich legacy of Walt Disney Studio’s Ink and Paint Department by dedicating a sheet of Forever Stamps, featuring classic Disney villains. This issuance celebrates Disney’s animation that began in 1923.

“`Each stamp showcase classic Disney villains: Maleficent (Sleeping Beauty), Captain Hook (Peter Pan), Honest John (Pinocchio), Queen of Hearts (Alice in Wonderland), The Queen (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), Lady Tremaine (Cinderella), Scar (The Lion King), Cruella De Vil (One Hundred and One Dalmatians), Gaston (Beauty and the Beast), and Ursula (The Little Mermaid).

“`The words  USA and FOREVER appear in the top right corner, or bottom right corner of each stamp; the name of the classic villain, and the film in which the character appears, runs along the left edge. The announcement was made over the weekend at the D23 Expo in Anaheim.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Two Join Passing Parade…

July 16th, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“`Martin Landau was a stellar character actor, who thrived on screen and in television. He’s best remembered for his three-year stint on  Mission: Impossible;  and his Oscar-winning performance as Bela Lugosi in  Ed Wood. A role he regretted not playing; the pointy-eared Spock on  Star Trek, which he turned down. He was also wed to actress Barbara Bain for 35 years.

“`Landau had studied drawing at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, and worked as a New York Daily News cartoonist, before he switching careers. In 1955, Landau was among hundreds who applied to study at the prestigious Actors Studio, and one of two picked. The other… Steve McQueen.  MARTIN LANDAU –>

“`His litany of fine cinematic roles include North By Northwest, Pork Chop Hill, Cleopatra, Nevada SmithThe Greatest Story Ever Told; and after his success on television, Meteor, and two Oscar nods for performances in Tucker: The Man and His Dream and Crimes and Misdemeanors. When Tim Burton cast Martin as Lugosi, he was clearly at the top of his craft, carrying home a statuette, while up against Paul Scofield in Quiz Show, Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction, Gary Sinise – Forrest Gump, and Chazz Palminteri – Bullets Over Broadway. Encouraged by his mentor, Lee Strasberg, Landau decided to teach acting. Noted thespians he coached included Jack Nicholson and Anjelica Huston.

“`He also guest-starred in television shows, such as Gunsmoke, Wagon Train, Bonanza, The Twilight ZoneThe Rifleman, The Outer Limits, The Big Valley, Get Smart, The Alfred Hitchcock HourColumbo, Murder She Wrote, and The Simpsons.

“`Martin Landau was 89.


“`George A. Romero was the creator of the modern zombie-genre of films, producing the low-budget, Night of the Living Dead. A decade later, Dawn of the Dead cemented his legacy. He also produced the horror schlock — Creepshow. Romero’s influence could be seen across decades of American culture, from the cinematic work of John Carpenter; writings of Stephen King, and vast success of Silence of the Lambs. Ironically, his favorite Hitchcock production was not Psycho; it was North by Northwest, a film that featured a young Martin Landau as a metro-sexual villain.


“`George A Romero was 77. If he comes back to life, it may be just a desire for human flesh.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Mayberry Days in September…

July 15th, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“`The annual Mayberry Days is a fest with activities and events for fans who long for days when life was simple,  and the sheriff didn’t carry a pistol. Drink a bottle of soda pop, play a game of checkers, and enjoy local bands playing tunes that were heard on The Andy Griffith Show. The festival takes place September 19th-24th.

“`From the first swing at  The Emmett golf tourney on Thursday morning, eating a barbecue sandwich, to crooning a song at the Blackmon Amphitheatre  on Sunday morning. The Surry Arts Council  and the City of Mount Airy welcomes people of all ages, and from all around the world, to Mayberry Days. Make plans to attend this family friendly festival.           ANDY GRIFFITH —>

“`Mayberry Days takes place around Mount Airy with Andy Griffith Museum TheatreAndy Griffith PlayhouseHistoric Earle Theatre, and Blackmon Amphitheatre being the hubs of activity. Everything is within walking distance; so, wear comfortable shoes and clothes (the festival goes on, rain or shine). There is free parking in downtown municipal lots. Most events are scheduled for minimal overlap where you can enjoy nearly everything.

“`There is so much to do during the festival with all types of shows, a parade, special guests, contests, a silent auction full of unique Mayberry items, food, and games… Something for the entire family! Plus, take time to slow down and enjoy what Mayberry means to you.

“`Guests scheduled to appear:  Betty Lynn, Ronnie Schell, Maggie Peterson, Rodney Dilolard, Margaret Kerry, Ronnie Dapo, and others.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Do the Hustle…

July 14th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Politicos meet with foreign operatives to receive contributions that encourages the peddling of influence.  I am not writing about a presidential candidate’s son, son-in-law, and campaign manager that recently met with Russian agents. I am referring to the very-real Abscam sting operation that took place in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

“`The F.B.I.,  aided by the Justice Department, videotaped politicians accepting bribes from a fictitious Arab company in return for political favors. Over 30 political figures were investigated, and among those, six members of the  United States House of Representatives and one senator, were convicted. One congressman did not accept any bribes. John Murtha, of Pennsylvania, would remain a distinguished member of Congress for the remainder of his career.

“`The Abscam operation is dramatized in a 2013 movie production, American Hustle, directed by David O. Russell. It’s described as a fictionalization, rather than a straight adaptation. The film featured Christian Bale, Amy Adams, Bradley Cooper, Jennifer Lawrence and Jeremy Renner.  It received ten Oscar nominations,  including Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and, all four acting categories. It received zero Academy Awards.

“`When the investigation became public in the early 1980s, an ethical controversy focused on the use of the sting technique. Ultimately, all Abscam convictions were upheld on appeal; but, some judges criticized the tactics used, and lapses in F.B.I. and D.O.J. supervision. Americans supported the operation; others argued that Abscam was an entrapment scenario. Among the concerns expressed were the undercover agents’ involvement in illegal activity, the possibility of entrapping individuals,  the prospect of damaging reputations of innocent civilians, and the opportunity to undermine legitimate rights to privacy. Congressional concerns over the nature of sting operations still persist to this day.

“`I know of one president who might express his concerns about this process of investigation… But, I digress.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Poet’s Stamp of Approval…

July 12th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`In observance of the  200th birthday of the iconic Henry David Thoreau, the United States Postal Service is marking the occasion with a new postage stamp honoring the Walden and Civil Disobedience  writer, philosopher, and naturalist. The poet was born in Massachusetts, on July 12, 1817.

“`Fans are gathering at Walden Pond, where Thoreau lived and worked, to read aloud from Walden, and other classics. Concord Postmaster Ray White, and officials from the Thoreau Farm and Birthplace, will be on hand to dedicate the stamp. They say it will be in tribute to Thoreau’s personal example of simple living,  his criticism of materialism, and the timeless questions he raises about the place of the individual in society.

“`Last May, actor and environmentalist, Ed Begley Jr. (above), a board member of Walden Woods Project,  was at a dedication of the Postal Service’s new Thoreau postage stamp at Walden Pond in Concord.

“`As Thoreau observed:  You must live in the present; launch yourself on every wave; find your eternity in each moment. For the present… Let us remember the eternal Henry David Thoreau.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- There Will Always Be Tara…

July 11th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`The personal collection of Vivien Leigh, the Academy Award-winning actress, best known for her performance in Gone With the Wind, is going up for bidding at Sotheby’s London. Prior to the auction, taking place September 26th, you can currently view a curated selection from the collection until August 11th.

“`The collection, passed through Leigh’s family, includes her personal edition of Gone With the Wind, given to her by author Margaret Mitchell, and copy of the  Gone with the Wind script  (circa 1939). Her wig from A Streetcar Named Desire,  and a portrait of the movie star by Augustus John, are also up for grabs. Jewels worn by the actress will be on sale. VIVIEN LEIGH –>

“`A style icon of her time, Leigh was known for having glamorous wardrobe and exquisite jewelry.  Her private collection doesn’t disappoint. Each of the 250-plus lots are estimated to sell for between 100 to 100,000 pounds.

“`In 2013, Leigh’s grandchildren sold her archive, including correspondence, photographs, and awards, to London’s Victoria and Albert Museum for an undisclosed sum.

“`A full exhibition of all lots in the sale opens September 22nd.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Frog in the Throat…

July 10th, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“` Kermit the Frog is receiving a new voice. ABC News and the Hollywood Reporter are reporting: Steve Whitmire has left his role of giving life to the iconic Muppet. Whitmire has voiced the character since Muppets creator Jim Henson’s demise in 1990. A Muppets Studio spokesperson announced that longtime  Muppets performer Matt Vogel will be taking over the role. He has voiced such characters as Big Bird and The Count.

“`Kermit made his debut in the 1955 television program,  Sam and Friends, which locally aired in Washington, DC. Kermit was fashioned from an old coat that belonged to Henson’s mother, and was named after one of Henson’s childhood friends.

“`Representatives for Walt Disney Studios, which owns Muppets Studio, didn’t return a request for comment about the motivation behind the move; nor did Miss Piggy.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Sitting on Your Buns at Work…

July 7th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Calling recent college graduates, adventure-seekers, and hot dog mega-fans:  Oscar Mayer is looking for new official Hotdoggers to drive Wienermobiles around the country. The company is calling for qualified would-be Hotdoggers to submit their application for the chance to spend a full year on the road representing Oscar Mayer.

“`The perks include a competitive salary, plus expenses, benefits, and clothing; the chance to work in a traveling public relations firm; the experience in a self-managed position with many responsibilities; and, the company car guaranteed to turn heads. Imagine representing Oscar Mayer in the Wienermobile for radio and television appearances, grocery market and military visits, newspaper coverage, and charity events. You will also travel coast-to-coast.

“`This job is a brand ambassador position, and the company is looking for folks who not only will be happy to drive in a Wienermobile, but who understands how to responsibly represent the brand. Oscar Mayer is accepting applications from individuals who have a college BA or BS in Public Relations, Communications, Journalism, Marketing, or Advertising; although this position isn’t limited to those degrees. You have until January 31, 2018 to apply. Drivers will hit the road next June.

“`Send your resume to:

Oscar Mayer
Attn: Hotdogger Position
560 E Verona Ave
Verona, WI 53593

or e-mail to wmrequest@kraftheinzcompany.com

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Did She or Didn’t She…

July 5th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`A newly discovered photograph suggests the iconic aviator Amelia Earhart, who vanished eighty years ago on a round-the-world flight,  survived a crash in the Marshall Islands. The photo, found in an obscure file at the National Archives, shows a gal resembling Earhart, and a man who appears to be her navigator Fred Noonan on a dock.  This new discovery is featured in a History Channel special,  Amelia Earhart:  The Lost Evidence, airing this Sunday.

“`Independent analysts feel the photo appears legitimate and undoctored.  A former executive assistant director for the FBI, and an NBC News analyst, has studied the visual evidence, and is confident it shows the famed pilot and her navigator.

“`Earhart was last heard from on July 2, 1937, as she attempted to become the first female pilot to circumnavigate the Earth.  She was declared dead, two years later,  after the United States concluded she had crashed somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. Her remains were never found. But,  investigators believe they’ve found evidence that suggests Earhart and Noonan were blown off course, and survived the ordeal.  The investigative group behind the History special believes the photo may have been taken by someone who was spying for the United States on Japanese military activity in the Pacific.

“`The photo shows a Japanese ship, Koshu, towing a barge with something that appears to be 38-feet-long  — the same length as Earhart’s plane. For decades, locals have claimed they saw her plane crash, before she and Noonan were taken away. Native school kids insisted they saw Earhart in captivity. The story was even documented in postage stamps issued in the 1980s.

“`The theory is that the Koshu took her to Saipan, in the Mariana Islands,  and perished there under the custody of the Japanese. Authorities in Japan have told NBC News — they have no record of Earhart being in their custody.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Our National Anthem…

July 4th, 2017

Manny P. here… 

“`Francis Scott Key, apparently better at lyrics than a melody, put his description of the battle of Fort McHenry to an old English tune that had a lot less to do with patriotism than it did with booze and women. This year marks the 100th season that it was played for a first time at a World Series game  — an event that helped cement it in the consciousness to become our  National Anthem. The Star Spangled Banner’s history is rooted in our our National Pastime.

“`On September 5, 1918, newspapers were dominated by reports of  World War I, including the latest American dead. The World Series was in Chicago with the Cubs hosting Babe Ruth and the Boston Red Sox. The games were played at Comiskey Park, home of the White Sox, instead of their new locale at Wrigley Field; called Weegham Park, at the time. But, in a city jittery over the war, the game that day attracted less than  20,000 fans, the smallest World Series crowd in years. Then, in the seventh inning, the band from the Navy training station, north of Chicago, started to play the Star-Spangled Banner.

“`The head of the Navy band at the time was the well known conductor and composer, John Philip Sousa. He was not at the game;  but, he had recently arranged the standardized arrangement that is still played today.  The 1918 World Series would have been one of the first times the band could test the newer version. Players took off their caps as they faced a flag that fluttered atop a pole in right field, as the twelve-piece band started to play. A couple of fans began to sing. Then others joined in; and when the last notes hit, a great volume of cheering rolled across the stadium. Not everybody thought what happened was a huge deal. Sports writer Ring Lardner wrote about it; but, only as a punch line at the end of his column.

“`It wasn’t until 1931 that Congress and President Herbert Hoover officially designated the song as the National Anthem. It wasn’t until the 1940s, during World War II, Major League teams started playing it every day.

“`And today, it is played at almost every American sporting event, from Little League to the Super Bowl to medal ceremonies at The Olympics. Happy Independence Day!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Disney is Walking the Plank…

July 3rd, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`Disney officially announced there will be a major change in the  Pirates of the Caribbean attraction at both domestic parks. The ride at Walt Disney World and Disneyland will no longer have the  redhead up for auction as Disney is looking to alter things so they’re more fitting to today’s times. The famous audio-animatronic will get a new look and a brand new role. She becomes a pirate in charge of the auction, instead of being in the auction.


“`The new scene shall display a group of pirates at an auction of surrendered goods from the people of the town. The redhead will auction the items. A banner that reads:  Auction, take a wench for a bride will be altered to Auction, Surrender yer loot. The original tableau has been a part of the attraction for as long as anyone can remember.

“`There are a number of alterations being made to  Disney Parks around the world; with new lands added, and old attractions getting makeovers. On July 24th, Pirates of the Caribbean is set to re-open in Disneyland Paris also with a few changes.  Captain Barbossa from the film franchise will be making his first appearance in the attraction, while audio-animatronics croon a number of new tunes from the movie.

“`And, the railway at Disneyland has recently been altered to accommodate the construction of the Star Wars Land.  Now, the train route skirts the edge of a shortened Rivers of America, along Big Thunder Trail, and makes a sharp left turn to head for Mickey’s Toontown Station in Fantasyland. The attraction opens to the public on July 29th

“`The bottom line… at Pirates of the Caribbean, pillaging remains acceptable; while human slave trade is considered a bridge too far.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Poignant Family Auction…

July 2nd, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`For fans of the late mother-daughter duo of Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, consider this your chance to own a once-in-a-lifetime artifact that was a part in their lives. Later in her life, Reynolds was well known for auctioning much of her MGM memorabilia.

“`Profiles in History, the popular auction house, has announced  1,500 of Fisher and Reynolds’ possessions will be sold in an authorized personal property auction on September 23rd.  This public event is being held in anticipation of their legendary compound being put on the market; located in the heart of Coldwater Canyon.

“`The auction house promises the items offered will be an extensive mix. They include Reynolds Ruby Slippers from The Wizard of Oz; her original half-sheet movie poster of Singin’ in the Rain; Fisher’s life-size C-3PO; and her on-set chair used on Return of the Jedi.

“`Part of the proceeds of the auction will benefit two charities: The Thalians, founded by Reynolds in the 1950s to tackle mental-health stigmas; and the Jed Foundation, dedicated to suicide prevention.

“`Their legendary Hollywood estate property has a true Hollywood-pedigree. An original 1928 hacienda-style home rests on 3.5 lushly landscaped acres, and includes a long line of famous former owners, such as the Oscar-winning costume designer, Edith Head; Robert Armstrong, King Kong’s captor in the original film; and Bette Davis.

“`Own a celebrated piece of Hollywood history. Debbie would endorse this auction, if she were still with us.


“`Miriam Marx was an author, and the daughter of Groucho Marx. Besides working on her dad’s quiz show, You Bet Your Life, she appeared in a couple of Marx Brothers documentaries. Her book, Love Groucho: Letters from Groucho Marx to His Daughter Miriam, she chronicled her difficult relationship with Groucho, a battle against addictive substances,  and, eventual reconciliation with her father.                      GROUCHO / MIRIAM MARX –>

“`Miriam Marx was 90.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Another De Havilland Lawsuit…

July 1st, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`The Los Angeles Times is reporting that Olivia de Havilland is suing FX and producer Ryan Murphy,  over the unauthorized use of her identity in Feud:  Bette and Joan. The miniseries was about the off-screen rivalry between actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford,  and it co-starred Catherine Zeta-Jones as de Havilland;  a confidante of Davis, and narrator throughout the eight-episode production.

“`De Havilland, who resides in France, and today turns 101, filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court against  FX Networks, LLC and Ryan Murphy Productions on an unauthorized commercial use of Dame Olivia’s name and identity in the FX hit series,  according to her attorneys, Suzelle Smith and Don Howarth.  The suit accuses FX, and its partners, of appropriating de Havilland’s name without proper permission, using fictional dialogue; and placing her in a false light to sensationalize the series, and to promote their own businesses, while ignoring her interests, entirely. She is the only living person that was substantively portrayed in the mini-series.  OLIVIA DE HAVILLAND ->

“`De Havilland is no stranger to legal proceedings. In 1943, she filed a landmark lawsuit against Warner Brothers that resulted in the collapse of the binding long-term contract system, and put the  de Havilland Law on the books, as a matter of course. This decision remains a most significant and far-reaching legal ruling in Hollywood. It allowed contract actors to choose movie projects, and create their own production companies; Humphrey Bogart and Burt Lancaster would choose the latter career path.

“`Her team plans to file a motion, seeking an expedited trial date because of de Havilland’s age. The suit seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages for emotional distress; damage to her reputation, and past and future economic losses; plus, an injunction barring the defendants from using her name or image in the series, or otherwise.

“`FX declined to comment on the lawsuit.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Cinecon to Honor Norman Lloyd…

June 30th, 2017

Manny P. here…

“`This year,  Cinecon 53 is honoring a true cinematic legend: Norman Lloyd. The 102-year old actor has had an eighty year career.  An original member of Orson Welles’ Mercury Theatre troupe, his movie credits include Alfred Hitchcock’s Saboteur and Spellbound.  Lloyd was a director and producer of many episodes of  Alfred Hitchcock Presents;  and starred in St. Elswhere. Norman will be on hand to receive the prestigious Cinecon Legacy Award.

“`This year’s festival takes place in Hollywood, from August 31st through September 4th.  Loew’s Hollywood Hotel is the host venue, with all screenings at the historic Egyptian Theater, just down the street on Hollywood Blvd.

“`The fest will open with a gala reception in the forecourt of the Egyptian Theatre, followed by a David Shepard tribute screening of a classic — Steamboat Bill Jr., starring Buster Keaton. Famous Players Orchestra shall provide live musical accompaniment for the film.

“`Cinecon 53 will also feature special programs, as well as a movie memorabilia show at Loew’s Hollywood Hotel, 1755 N. Highland Ave. in Hollywood. Patrons may purchase rare movie stills, posters, lobby cards, and other collectibles in the dealer’s rooms, and have books signed at their author’s tables.

“`I’m hoping to spend another memorable time at Cinecon 53, autographing copies of my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series for interested readers.

Until next time>                               “never forget”