“Forgotten Hollywood”- Road to El Segundo…

June 19th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Due out this Fall, the anticipated release of my next paperback in the Forgotten Hollywood Book Series. The title of this latest entry is in part a homage to the iconic Road films that starred Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, and Dorothy Lamour  (right). My new work is entitled Road to Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History.

“`Call it kismet. This weekend, there is a film festival that highlights the performances of Hope, Crosby and Lamour. Old Town Music Hall is a treasured cultural landmark located in El Segundo, right by Los Angeles International Airport.

“`The screen team starred in a series of seven Road Pictures from 1940-1962 for Paramount Pictures. These movies were comedic, adventurous, and romantic. Much of the dialogue was ad-libbed by Crosby and Hope. You can tell they had a blast making these flicks, and decades later, we are still laughing and enjoying the fun.

“`The screenings include Road to Singapore, Road to Morocco, Road to Utopia (personal favorite), and Road to Rio. Every show begins with music played on their historic pipe organ, an audience sing along, and a comedy short. There will be a 15-minute intermission, followed by the feature film.

“`The Old Town Music Hall is located at 140 Richmond Street, El Segundo, CA.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Downton Abbey: The Exhibition…

June 15th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

`Downton Abbey: The Exhibition, based on the beloved television show, transports fans to post-Edwardian England,  where the characters and iconic castle comes to life.  You shall be immersed in this fascinating social history, culture, and memorable moments from the program’s six-season run.

“`Do not expect any of the cast to be present; however, many of their original wardrobe is on display. To celebrate Downton Abbey: The Exhibition, The Whitby Hotel and The Pierre has launched a daily Afternoon Tea. Both are conveniently a short walk from the hotel.

“`Viking is the presenting sponsor of Downton Abbey: The ExhibitionThis partnership continues its long history with Downton Abbey, Highclere Castle, and the Carnarvon clan.

“`The exhibition is located at 218 West 57th Street, between Broadway and 7th Ave.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- The Return of Looney Toons…

June 14th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`Warner Brothers Animation have announced their plans for a new short-form Looney Tunes set to air in 2019. The intention is to create a thousand minutes of animated shorts each season. It is not totally clear how fans will be able to access the new content, but its distribution will reportedly range across several platforms including broadcast, mobile and digital.

“`The series will feature veteran Looney Tunes voice cast members, including Jeff Bergman, Eric Bauza, and Bob Bergen. There will be more news on the cartoonists they recruit soon. 

“`Looney Tunes initially appeared in 1930 in response to the success of Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse cartoons, as well as the high demand for talking pictures at the time. The series made stars of Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd, Porky Pig, Sylvester, among others.

   

“`Wait for it…                                                                    That’s All Folks!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Wiseguy Diner Goes Up in Flames…

June 12th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Earlier this week, a historic diner in Queens went up in flames. GoodFellas Diner opened in the early 1960s and was once called Clinton Diner.  It was re-named for the Martin Scorsese cinematic masterpiece following the film’s release.

“`There were two scenes shot at the diner for the movie, both featuring Robert De Niro and Ray Liotta; at a booth, and also in the parking lot at a payphone, where De Niro’s character finds out Tommy DeVito (Joe Pesci) was killed.

   

                                                                  ROBERT DE NIRO     RAY LIOTTA

“`Phillip Seymour Hoffman and Pierce Brosnan have visited the iconic eatery. The diner has also been featured on television, most memorably in The Good Wife.

“`There were no injuries, and the diner is currently boarded up. The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. The owners are currently working to re-open the restaurant, though no timeline has been established.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Lunch with the Pink Lady…

June 11th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`I will be spending Wednesday with Jackie Golberg, aka The Pink Lady. She is hosting a new web-based program on LATalkRadio.com called  Pink Lady Presents. Her previous guests include local talent and civic leaders.

“`This hour-long program airs LIVE at 11a, and I shall be chatting about my broadcasting career, and promoting my award-winning Forgotten Hollywood Book Series. I also plan on performing a number from The Music Man.

“`Please plan on tuning in and show your support for a recent KNX 1070 Hero of the Week… Jackie Goldberg!! Here is the link if you would like to view:

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Founding Father Goes Home…

June 10th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`The blockbuster musical Hamilton is finally traveling to the nation’s capital, and its citizenry is preparing for the visit. Lin-Manuel Miranda’s  historical musical about the life of Alexander Hamilton is starting three months at the Kennedy Center.

“`Ironically,  Hamilton would not spend much of his professional career in Washington. The United States capital was in Philadelphia while he served as the nation’s first treasury secretary; and the federal government didn’t move to Washington until 1800, four years before his death.

“`The myriad museums of modern Washington have been preparing specialized exhibits. The Postal Museum has already launched an exhibit —  Alexander Hamilton: Soldier, Secretary, Icon — and it includes mail, portraits, and postage stamps reflective of his life. A highlight of the exhibit are the two flintlock pistols made of walnut, brass, and gold that were used in the July 11, 1804 duel with Vice President Aaron Burr, resulting Hamilton’s demise. These pistols are on loan from the private collection of JP Morgan Chase and Co.

“`The Library of Congress is unveiling its own Hamilton display, drawing on its collection of more than 12,000 of Hamilton’s papers and documents. Miranda based his musical on a 2004 biography, Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow, which drew from the same material. Also, there is material chronicling a historic meal between Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson.

“`The Library of Congress is supplementing the physical exhibit by making a vast number of Hamilton-related papers accessible online. These include the Reynolds Pamphlet, his 100-page public response to his involvement in the first American political sex scandal.

“`With a song in their heart, the District of Columbia is mad about the boy.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Genuflect…

June 8th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`A 26-foot statue of Marilyn Monroe has been placed in a Stamford, Connecticut park across from a church, which is getting a full view of her back side. It depicts the famous scene from 1955’s The Seven Year Itch where the actress holds down her white dress as air is blowing up from a subway grate.

“`Forever Marilyn is one of 36 the statues by artist Seward Johnson that are on display and on loan in the downtown area through the summer. They are part of the city’s annual Art in Public Spaces program. All the statues except Marilyn are life-size and depict persons doing everyday activities. The back of her statue showing her underwear is clearly visible from the front of the First Congregational Church of Stamford.

“`Organizers argue that there are many nude statues outdoors in Europe — and near churches —  that are accepted by the public. But, it is sure to spark conversation when church members return for Sunday worship and catch a glimpse. One resident has already found it disturbing to see youngsters climbing on the statue’s leg and looking up the skirt. The pastor of the church, however, finds the whole thing artistically odd, and he sees humor over the perceived uproar.

“`The Stamford Downtown Special Services District is hosting the exhibit, with sponsors, including the real estate finance firm UC Funds. For now, the organizers have decided to keep on displaying Marilyn, and not to scratch the Seven Year Itch… statue!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Backwards and In Heels…

June 7th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`The lineup of repertory programs and festival for the summer season at the Film Society of Lincoln Center has been announced, including a retrospective on the classic musicals of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. This portion of the event is from July 13th to July 15th.

FRED ASTAIRE                GINGER ROGERS

“`In 1930, three years before Fred Astaire had appeared on film, writer Robert Benchley had proclaimed him the greatest tap dancer in the world. Astairealong with his sister Adele, had already been hailed as a sensation of the New York and London stage when Flying Down to Rio opened in 1933.

“`Ginger Rogers, on the other hand, was several years into a successful movie acting career, and had never danced with a partner, when they were paired in Rio. The rest is history; over nine years, Fred and Ginger would make ten movies together, immortalized as icons for their dazzlingly fleet-footed choreography, and their singularly charming onscreen chemistry.

“`This was the artistic collaboration that revolutionized and re-imagined the film musical, reshaping the genre’s legacy for generations to come. Eighty-five years after their first collaboration, the Film Society is delighted to present a three-day complete retrospective of their shared oeuvre.

“`Expect a well-choreographed event.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Bye Bye To the Lollipop Kid…

June 6th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`The last living member of the Lollipop Guild has died. Jerry Maren, who portrayed one of the beloved munchkins in The Wizard of Oz, will screen tomorrow on TCM at 5p (pst), it remains one of the most beloved movies of all-time.

             

JERRY MAREN                                 THE LOLLIPOP GUILD

“`In The Wizard of Oz, Jerry was the munchkin dressed in green, who stood alongside Jakob Gerlich  and Harry Earles. He is the one who hands Judy’s character, Dorothy, a lollipop. Maren was only 18 years old when he shot his scenes for the movie. Most of the cast have all passed away. Caren Marsh Doll, who served as Judy’s dance stand-in, is still living.

“`He also had roles in Our Gang comedy shorts, At the Circus and Planet of the Apes. In the 1950s, Maren appeared as Little Oscar for Oscar Meyer, and Buster Brown in television and radio commercials. Jerry played Mayor McCheese and The Hamburglar for McDonald’s. Maren and Billy Barty organized Little People of America. He continued to work until 2010.

“`His funeral was held at Forest Lawn in Hollywood, since he passed away in May. Jerry Maren was 99.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Saturday Night Pizza…

June 5th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`On June 12th, John Travolta is returning to Lenny’s Pizza in Brooklyn to receive a lifetime achievement award from State Senator Marty Golden, and will be joined by his peers, family, friends, and fans. Travolta’s trip to Lenny’s is three days before the nationwide release of his latest film, Gotti.

JOHN TRAVOLTA

“`Lenny’s – a staple since 1953 –  had a co-starring role in the 1977 classic Saturday Night Fever. In the film’s opening credits, Travolta’s on-screen character, Tony Manero, gets himself a pair of slices at the now-famous Lenny’s window before strutting his stuff down 86th Street. Folks still come up to the window and mimic John Travolta’s line at least ten times a day.

“`Travolta’s latest award will serve as a gracious thank you from the New York borough, and as a commemoration of the iconic roles he continues to play.

“`Cue the Bee Gees Stayin’ Alive.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Out of Hiding…

June 4th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Katherine Johnson, the NASA mathematician whose calculation helped astronauts return safely to Earth, will be honored at her alma mater with a bronze statue, and an annual scholarship in her name.  West Virginia State University is planning a dedication ceremony set for August 25th, the day before Johnson’s 100th birthday.

“`Long before the digital era, Johnson performed as a human computer at an agency that would become NASA, working in relative obscurity as an African-American woman. Her contributions were later recognized in  Hidden Figures, with actress Taraji P. Henson playing her role.

“`The 1957 launch of the Soviet satellite Sputnik changed history, and Katherine Johnson’s (right) life. In 1962, as NASA prepared for the orbital mission of John Glenn, Johnson was called upon to do the work that she would become most known for.

“`When asked to name her greatest contributions to space exploration, Johnson refers to the calculations that helped synch  Project Apollo’s Lunar Lander with a moon-orbiting Command and Service Module. She also worked on the Space Shuttle and Earth Resource Satellite, and authored or co-authored 26 research reports.

“`Katherine retired in 1986. In 2015, at age 97, President Obama awarded the mathematician a Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor.

“`West Virginia State hopes to endow the $100,000 scholarship, awarding the money to students majoring in science, technology, engineering, and math, targeting people who are underrepresented in those fields.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Heavyweight Pardon…

May 30th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`Days after the presidential pardon of Jack Johnson, Sylvester Stallone has announced plans for a biopic on the first African-American heavyweight boxing champion. Stallone said that his newly launched Balboa Productions will begin with a film about Johnson.

   

                                    JACK JOHNSON                   SYLVESTER STALLONE

“`Recently, Stallone stood next to President Donald Trump in the Oval Office as he signed the posthumous pardon to Johnson, who served ten months in prison in what the chief executive called a racially-motivated injustice. Trump added that Stallone was instrumental in bringing Johnson’s story to his attention.

“`Stallone’s production company said the film will be fast-tracked by Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures. According to Sly, Johnson was the basis for his character Apollo Creed in the Rocky series. Previously, the character played by James Earl Jones in  The Great White Hope was based on the life and career of Jack Johnson.

“`The 71-year-old actor is currently in production on Creed II for MGM.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Song on the Brain…

May 29th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`Coming this Summer,  you can sign up for the newest online cinematic-related course from Turner Classic Movies and Ball StateTCM Presents: MAD ABOUT MUSICALS! is a free online course dedicated to the history of the Hollywood Musical; a truly teachable moment!

“`Running from June 3rd to June 30th, this FREE interactive experience offers an entertaining study into the movie musical, from the 1930s to the 1970s, with multimedia course materials, digital games and ongoing interactions. Join fellow film fans on the TCM message boards, and more.

“`Movie afficianados and online learners from around the world are expected to learn about this dependable genre. TCM Presents: MAD ABOUT MUSICALS is the fourth FREE online course to be offered by TCM and Ball State, following Film Noir, Slapstick Comedy, and 50 Years of Hitchcock. Plus, TCM will screen ninety film musicals over the month of June.

“`The link below sends you to a month-long classroom celebration of the Hollywood Musical  experience:

https://www.canvas.net/courses/17753/enrollment/new

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- The Duke Bobblehead…

May 26th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`As we approach the Memorial Day weekend, we can celebrate in our unique way. Royal Bobbles has unveiled the John Wayne World War II bobble head, which celebrates his many heroic roles in World War II films. Though he never served in war, The Duke was associated with the military because of his iconic motion pictures, including They Were Expendable, Sands of Iwo Jima, In Harm’s WayOperation Pacific, The Green Beretand The Longest Day.

“`Wayne’s monumental cinematic career spanned five decades. He appeared in over 175 films; and, more than a dozen directed by John Ford. For generations, he was Hollywood’s biggest and most durable box-office star.

“`In 1979, the actor was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal. The following year,  President Jimmy Carter presented Wayne with America’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. He is among a handful of individuals who have received both.

“`The John Wayne legend lives on. He still appears in Harris Poll’s annual listings of America’s favorite movie stars, ranking second in the 2014 poll. He has the distinction of being the only actor to be on this list every year since 1994. And, happy birthday to The Duke.

Until next time>                              “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Celebrating Buster Keaton…

May 23rd, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`To celebrate the dedication of a new plaque that honors the former location of Buster Keaton Studios in Hollywood, The International Buster Keaton Society invites you to join his fans for a complete weekend of Buster Keaton-related activities in Los Angeles. This is the first time the society is organizing events in the town that Buster called home for so many decades.

“`Among the activities: A Hollywood Heritage Museum night of screenings, a studio locale walking tour, an additional movie screening at the Egyptian Theatre (moderated by Leonard Maltin), a visit to Keaton’s gravesite at Forest Lawn Cemetery, and the Saturday dedication ceremony.

“`The City of Los Angeles has officially declared June 16th, 2018 as  Buster Keaton Day! The International Buster Keaton Society has produced a beautiful bronze plaque to mark the location of the former Buster Keaton Studios, near Santa Monica Blvd. and Vine St. in Los Angeles. They will unveil and dedicate this permanent addition to the fabric of Los Angeles.

“`For a complete schedule, visit:

http://www.busterkeaton.org/weekend/ 

“`This is fitting tribute to honor the Great Stone Face.

Until next time>                               “never forget”