“Forgotten Hollywood”- Lone Ranger Pistol on Display…

April 30th, 2014

Manny P. here…john_hart_autograph_photo

   A museum in Wyoming has acquired an old pistol made famous by a masked hero of television from more than 60 years ago. The Lone Ranger’s Colt .45 is on display at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West, in Cody.

   The single-action revolver once belonged to actor John Hart. He portrayed the Lone Ranger in the original television series that ran from 1952 to 1954, about a masked Texas Ranger who battled injustice in the Old West. His sidekick Tonto was one of the most well-known American Indian stereotypes of all time. Hart replaced Clayton Moore in 1952 for one season when Moore demanded a higher salary.

   Hart used several firearms over his acting career, but this gun is special. It features ivory grips and intricate engraving. The Powell Tribune reports the museum also has acquired autographed photos of Hart in costume and a cookbook he wrote in the 1990s. Hart died in 2009 at age 91.

   A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty Hi-Yo Silver… The Lone Ranger! Let’s return to those thrilling days of yesteryear…

   Cue the William Tell Overture.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- To Kill a Mockingbird an eBook!

April 29th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Harper Lee has agreed for To Kill a Mockingbird to be made available as an eBook and digital audiobook, finally filling one of the biggest gaps in the digital library. The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel will be released digitally on July 8th. With digital holdouts from JK Rowling to Ray Bradbury changing their minds over the past few years, Harper Lee’s novel had ranked with JD Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye as a missing prize for eBook readers. Other works still unavailable as eBooks include The Autobiography of Malcolm X and Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude.

190px-To_Kill_a_Mockingbird   First published in July 1960, Mockingbird has sold more than 30m copies worldwide, and that total is climbing by more than 1m copies a year, according to HarperCollins. Lee never published another book, which only seemed to add to the novel’s appeal. For decades she has resisted interviews and public appearances. She turned 88 on Monday and lives in her native Alabama.

   It was adapted into a 1962 motion picture that featured an Oscar-winning performance by Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, the courageous Alabama attorney who passionately defends a black man against charges that he raped a white woman.

   The eBook will be published by Cornerstone in the UK. The audiobook will become a downloadable edition of the existing CD narrated by Sissy Spacek.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Musicals on Television All the Rage!

April 28th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Fox apparently isn’t going to let NBC dominate the world of live television musicals. Fox jumped into the game, announcing it will broadcast a three-hour live version of Grease that will feature a young ensemble cast yet to be named. Live television productions of the 1950s were quite popular in its day, and it attracted up-and-coming actors.

   NBC got a ratings boost last December with its live broadcast of The Sound of Music starring Carrie Underwood. It says it’s working on a live production of Peter Pan for next December.

215px-GreaseLP   Grease is a 1971 musical by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey. Its 3,388-performance run was the longest in Broadway history (at the time), although it was surpassed by A Chorus Line a few years later. Adrienne Barbeau won the Theatre Circle Award for her performance as Rizzo in the original production. The choreography and costume design was given the Drama Desk Award.  It remains Broadway’s 15th longest-running show.

   Grease features such tunes as You’re the One That I Want, We Go Together, Greased Lightnin’, and Summer Nights. It was made into a 1978 film starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.

   The live televised version will be a production of Paramount Television.

   Rydell High… here we come!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Ben-Hur Redux…

April 25th, 2014

Manny P. here…406px-Ben-Hur-1925

   Mark Burnett and Roma Downey will produce a new version of the historical epic Ben-Hur, as the faith-based film revival continues on the big screen. Paramount Pictures and MGM announced today that they will co-produce the epic. The film is set for release in February 2016.

   Lewis Wallace’s 1880 novel has been adapted several times, most notably the 1959 film starring Charlton Heston. Famous for its chariot race scene, the film won 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture. A silent version was popular for its day.

   Burnett and Downey also produced the recently released film Son of God, which used footage from The Bible, which recently aired on the History Channel. They have become the go-to collaborators for biblical stories.

   Paramount has helped drive Hollywood’s new attention to this genre of epics with Darren Aronofsky’s Noah. It recently crossed $300 million in global box office.

   Bless the modern-day apostles!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Pathe Collection Going to YouTube!

April 23rd, 2014

Manny P. here…British_Pathe_current_logo

   Variety is reporting British Pathé, the UK newsreel archive company, has uploaded its entire 100-year collection of 85,000 historic films in high resolution to YouTube. The collection, which spans from 1896 to 1976, comprises some 3,500 hours of historical footage of major events, notable figures, fashion, travel, sports and culture. It includes extensive film from both World War I and World War II.

   Personalities captured in the newsreels include Princess Diana, Elizabeth Taylor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Marilyn Monroe, Fidel Castro, John Lennon, Salvador Dali, Mother Teresa, Muhammad Ali, and Charlie Chaplin. British Pathé already makes numerous video clips available on its website free for personal use, and it licenses the archive to television and film producers, and other companies and organizations.

   The YouTube channel is being managed by German online-media company Mediakraft, which will create new content using British Pathé material in English and other languages. Its founder, Charles Pathé, was a pioneer of moving pictures in the silent era.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Life and Times of Carole Lombard…

April 22nd, 2014

Manny P. here…Fireball_cover-web-680x1024

   Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3 is a new book that chronicles the tragic death of the gifted actress. The book also offers a day-by-day look at the struggles of her husband, Clark Gable, and Lombard’s family, friends, and fans, to cope with the tragedy.

   On January 16th, 1942, Hollywood’s Queen of Screwball  stepped onto a Transcontinental & Western Airlines DC-3, designated as Flight 3 in Indianapolis with her mother, Elizabeth Peters, and MGM publicity man Otto Winkler. Lombard had just completed the first sale of war bonds and stamps in the nation following its entry into World War II. Exhausted from five days on the road, Carole intended to return home to California by the quickest means possible. Fourteen hours into the trip, Flight 3 lay a flaming pile of debris, strewn across the side of Potosi Mountain, Nevada.

gable and lombard   Fireball is a fresh look at Carole Lombard’s life, and presents a first-ever examination of the events that led to that final flight and her death. Lombard became the first Hollywood star to sacrifice her life in World War II. The War Department offered Gable a funeral service with full military honors, but the actor refused, knowing his wife would never have approved such a spectacle.  <—- CLARK GABLE AND CAROLE LOMBARD

   But, Fireball goes further and explores the lives of the 21 other passengers on the plane, including 15 members of the US Army Air Corps, and addresses one of the most enduring mysteries of World War II: On a clear night full of stars, with TWA’s most experienced pilot at the controls of a 10-month-old aircraft under the power of two fully functioning engines, why did Flight 3 crash into that Nevada mountainside? Author Robert Matzen visited the wreckage site for inspiration to tell the tragic story. He also interviewed Robert Stack (a close friend of Lombard) prior to his death for his insight on the sad event.

   Life magazine sent photojournalist Myron Davis on the road to capture Lombard’s day of bondselling for an uplifting photo essay. Davis made 32 negatives on January 15th, 1942 and returned to Chicago to process the film… only to receive the call that Lombard was dead. Life subsequently killed his story and used only one of the photos in its obituary of the actress. A few others made newswires or surfaced for high-quality reproduction, while the rest remained in a trunk for 70 years. The entire group acquired from Myron Davis’s estate, many of these fascinating photos will be published for the first time in Fireball. All photos chosen for print have never been seen and offer a glimpse of Lombard’s hectic last full day of life.

Fireball_Type_4web3    Fireball: Carole Lombard and the Mystery of Flight 3 by Robert Matzen is published through Goodnight Books.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Really Bad Week… A Great Day!

April 20th, 2014

Manny P. here…

History buffs might not know this, but it seems—April 14th to April 20th—appears to be the worst week in American history. For example, the assassination of President Lincoln, the great San Francisco earthquake, the sinking of the Titanic, Bay of Pigs invasion, Columbine shooting, Oklahoma City bombing, etc. all happened during this seven-day period in history. This year, factor in Good Friday, and you get the point.

worst week in history

   Many movies and television programs have alluded to these events in history; what I like to call Hollywood-and-Vine moments. The best of these cinematic endeavors: San Francisco, Gone with the Wind, The Grapes of Wrath, Abe Lincoln in Illinois, The Red Badge of Courage, A Night to Remember1776, and Apollo 13. I’m convinced more will follow…

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   This is my 1000th blog story. I began this journey into Forgotten Hollywood in September of 2009. I never dreamed I would be announcing this milestone 4 1/2 years later. During this period, I received accolades from the Los Angeles Press Club and a litany of folks. Thank you for your continued support on this wonderful milestone!

   Have a great day… Happy Easter!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Sons of the Desert Wants You…

April 19th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   The daughter of Stan Laurel is inviting all fans of Laurel & Hardy to this year’s globally famous Sons of the Desert Convention to be held in Hollywood, CA. Her personal call-to-arms came on Hal Roach Studios letterhead. How classy is that!

lois letter

   It’s is a weeklong international convention, tour, and film fest leading up to the 4th of July. Are you ready for another fine mess?

L&H header

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Give Me a Head with Hair…

April 18th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Hairstyles have really changed over the years; especially during Hollywood’s Golden Age. I thought it might be fun to show the kind of looks iconic actresses have had during the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. You got to love this cultural expose!

hairstyles-of-the-classic-hollywood-era_520d012fd5e20_w1500

   Jennifer Aniston would be jealous. Enjoy!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Mack Sennett on DVD…

April 17th, 2014

Manny P. here…CroppedImage233329-MackSennett-Website-Cover

   The Keystone Film Company, under the able guidance from producer and director Mack Sennett, was the birthplace of classic American slapstick comedy. This historic studio was at one time home to a staggering number of silent screen luminaries, including Mabel Normand, Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, Harold Lloyd, Gloria Swanson, Wallace Beery, Harry Langdon, Marie Dressler, Ben Turpin, Charley Chase, Al St. John, Mack Swain, Billy Bevan, Louise Fazenda, Ford Sterling, Edgar Kennedy, Eddie Quillan, The Keystone Cops, and countless others. Even Charlie Chaplin, still the world’s most recognized actor, introduced his beloved Tramp character under the auspices of Keystone. Later, under the Mack Sennett Comedies banner, Sennett went on to produce a new generation of sound comedies, some in early color, featuring the likes of W.C. Fields, Bing Crosby, Andy Clyde, and more. Mack was a true cinematic visionary.

   Thanks to Flicker Alley, CineMuseum, and Keystone Films, over 100 of the surviving Sennett comedies have been gathered from around the world, fully restored, and digitally re-mastered in HD for Blu-ray home video. The Mack Sennett Collection, Vol. One features the first 50 of these films presented on a three-disc Blu-ray set.

   These new editions have been painstakingly reconstructed by CineMuseum and Keystone Films using original 35mm nitrate, archival negatives, preservation materials, and sometimes the lone known surviving print, from the collections of the Library of CongressMuseum of Modern ArtAcademy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Blackhawk Films, Lobster Films, the Richard M. Roberts Collection, Gierucki Studios, and dozens of privately held archives.

   Along with Hal Roach, Mack Sennett is a true pioneer of early film comedy.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- MLB Remembers Jackie Robinson…

April 16th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Jackie Robinson, who broke Major League Baseball’s color barrier 67 years ago, was honored at every ballpark on Tuesday. During one celebration at MLB’s third annual Diversity Business Summit, Rev. Jesse Jackson praised Commissioner Bud Selig for the strides the sport has taken in minority opportunities over the past two decades. Currently, MLB sponsors 35 Jackie Robinson Foundation scholars, a charity benefitting education for gifted students.

   As a proud UCLA Bruin alumnus, I’m delighted to let the current baseball head coach offer this wonderful analysis:

jackie robinson day

   Selig points out that Robinson’s first game occurred more than a year before President Harry Truman desegregated the United States military, and seven years before the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision that ruled state laws requiring segregated public schools were unconstitutional. An opening ceremony was scheduled for Yankee Stadium to unveil a plaque commemorating Nelson Mandela’s visit to the old New York ballpark in 1990. However, the Bronx Bomber game against the Chicago Cubs was rained out, and the ceremony, which includes Zondwa Mandela, a grandson of the late South African president, was pushed back until later this evening.

   Prior to last year’s 42, which chronicled the first year Robinson played in the Major Leagues, and featured Harrison Ford as Branch Rickey, United Artists produced a 1950 biography that starred Jackie Robinson as himself. Principal photography for the movie took place in the off-season following his third season with the Brooklyn Dodgers. In 2005, 20th Century Fox and Legend Films released a colorized version of the film, donating a portion of the proceeds to the Jackie Robinson Foundation.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Classic Items Has New Owners…

April 14th, 2014

Manny P. here… The_Rose_Tattoo_(1955_film_poster)

   A pair of rhinestone earrings Marilyn Monroe wore to a 1955 motion picture premiere have sold at auction for $185,000. Julien Auctions released a statement that the actress sported the jewelry when she attended the opening of The Rose Tattoo. Anna Magnani won an Oscar for Best Actress for her performance in the movie. Monroe did not appear in the film based on a Tennessee Williams play.

   The actual price included a 20% commission for the auction house. The high bid came from a foreign collector. The auction house does not release the names. The iconic sale was part of a two-day auction of Hollywood memorabilia Friday / Saturday at the Julien’s Beverly Hills gallery.

   A lighter used by Humphrey Bogart also sold for $19,200.

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TCM_website_logo   A happy 20th Birthday to Turner Classic Movies. Today, they are celebrating by airing some rather iconic films, including Citizen Kane, Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, and Singing in the Rain. They also have a 20 Classic TCM Moments documentary special planned.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Bill Holden Legacy Involves Wildlife!

April 13th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   The William Holden Wildlife Foundation was founded in 1982 by actress Stefanie Powers in memory of the late William Holden, to continue his work as a conservationist and co-founder of the Mt. Kenya Game Ranch. The estate is located on the equator at 7000 feet above sea level on the slopes of Mt. Kenya. It was founded to carry on his important efforts and meet the  increasing demand for alternatives to animal extinction.

NewLogo800x600   poster

   Captive breeding is an important tool for species conservation. This highly focused and labor intensive endeavor is accomplished by a system of world wide organizations participating in cooperation with one another. The International Species Inventory System keeps genealogical information on individual animals of 2,500 species of mammals and birds that are located in Europe and North American zoos; making it possible to arrange matings by computer, and minimizing problems caused by inbreeding.

   Throughout his life, William Holden continued his wholehearted support of the game ranch, and often referred to this as the greatest work of his life over and above his motion pictures. Considering he won an Oscar for Best Actor for his performance in Stalag 17, that’s saying something. Virtually 100% of tax-deductible donations goes directly to the never-ending work of WHWF. To make a contribution, please click on the link below:

http://www.whwf.org/

   While you are there, the William Holden Wildlife Foundation Education Center offers an opportunity to experience the outdoors in a communication with nature often unavailable in their own environment.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- TCM Film Fest Red Carpet…

April 12th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   The Turner Classic Film Festival Red Carpet was loaded with screen legends. Among the attendees: Shirley Jones, Tippi Hedren, Kim Novak, Maureen O’Hara, and one our stars of the Forgotten Hollywood Documentary… Margaret O’Brien.

   shirley jones tcm   maureen o'hara tcm

SHRLEY JONES                         MAUREEN O’HARA

   tippi hedren and kim novak tcm   margaret o'brien tcm

   TIPPI HEDREN       KIM NOVAK                        MARGARET O’BRIEN

   Also expected to stop by the event: Mel Brooks, Alan Arkin, and Jerry Lewis. This should be a great weekend of classic movie screenings.

TCM-Classic-Film-Festival-logo

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   Charlton Heston was honored with his own commemorative stamp at the TCM Classic Film Festival on Thursday. The United States Postal Service unveiled the Legends of Hollywood stamp at the TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX with TCM host Ben Mankiewicz as emcee. The event was attended by Chuck Heston’s family, including his wife, son, and daughter. TCM presented an evening of Heston films on April 4th.

   The celebrations continued with the world premiere screening of the newly restored 1958 movie Touch of Evil starring Heston, Janet Leigh, and Orson Welles.

   First day prints went on sale throughout the day. Heston is the 18th star to be honored as part of Legends of Hollywood series of stamps.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Wonderful World of Disney…

April 11th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   The timeless Disney tune It’s a Small World wafting through our memories from past theme park vacations turns 50 this year, and on Thursday, Disney parks worldwide hosted a global sing-along. The It’s a Small World number and animatronic attraction debuted at the 1964 New York World’s Fair at the UNICEF pavilion and sponsored by Pepsi. The soft drink chairman, Joan Crawford, prevailed upon her longtime friend, Mr. Walt Disney, to design the attraction. The infectious ditty was written by Richard and Robert Sherman at the request of Walt. Officials estimate that during a 16-hour operating day, the song is sung, on average, 1,200 times.

its a small world

   The attraction is a popular musical boat ride located in the Fantasyland area at each of the Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, including: Disneyland in California, the Magic Kingdom in Florida, Tokyo Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, Hong Kong Disneyland, and Shanghai Disneyland Park. The ride features over 300 brightly costumed audio dolls in the style of children of the world, frolicking in a spirit of international unity and singing the attraction’s title song, which has a theme of global peace.

   My only issue… I can’t get this blog story out of my head!

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   Walt Disney’s Palm Springs pad is up for sale. The secluded estate presents stunning views of the desert. It’s on the market for $595,000.

Disneycopy

   What makes this adorable house on three acres south of Palm Desert such a party palace? For starters, judging from the listing photos, you have zero view of your nearest neighbors. Perhaps it was this advanced seclusion that drew homeowner Walt Disney and his high-profile friends, such as Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Bob Hope, Humphrey Bogart, Lucille Ball, and Desi Arnaz, to the spot over the years.

   For the right buyer, one can own their very private Disney attraction!

Until next time>                               “never forget”