“Forgotten Hollywood”- Universal to Celebrate Centennial!

November 17th, 2011

Manny P. here…

   Universal Studios has plans for its 100th anniversary celebration. Established in 1912 by Carl Laemmle, it’s one of the oldest American film studios still in continuous production.

   According to their press release:

In January, we’re going to be unveiling an extensive year-long campaign that includes a significant restoration commitment for some of our most beloved motion pictures, fan engagement through special events, a home entertainment offering, theme park activities, promotions, and fun social media and web outreaches. All of this is designed to connect a new audience to our extraordinary library of cimena, as well as bring these memories back to longtime movie lovers.

   Universal is known for its Horror-genre involving  DraculaThe Mummy, Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, and The Wolf Man. During the early 1940s, their stable of actors included the biggest comedy team in America… <————— Abbott and Costello. The lot also cultivated successful cinematic characters such as The Dead End Kids, Sherlock Holmes, and Ma & Pa Kettle.

   Universal Studios is about to rock your world in 2012!


   BookByte Textbooks is the perfect place to purchase Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History for the Winter semester at your local college or university. Of course, if my paperback is not on your syllabus, the content of my work is a great reason to take a assignment-break for some fun reading.

   According to their website:

 It’s the textbook way to get all the textbooks you need for school at amazing prices. You can easily purchase your books online from us and we’ll ship them directly to you: you don’t even need to get out of your comfy chair.

   Here’s a link to purchase my book at an affordable price:


Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Doris Day’s CD Set for U.S. Release…

November 16th, 2011

Manny P. here…

   Doris Day’s new CD called My Heart is set for its U.S. release on December 2nd. Europe recently went gaga for her first compilation in decades. Included in this collection of music is a Bonus TrackScrewball (a favorite folk ballad  from the legendary songstress).

   Proceeds from the sales of this upcoming CD release will benefit the Doris Day Animal Foundation. You can pre-order a copy on Amazon, which would make a fabulous addtion to your music library, or a great holiday gift.

   You can also visit Day’s personal website. Click on the link below for details:


   Doris Day remains a vital study in our remembrance of Hollywood’s Golden Age. We are indeed blessed by her many cinematic and lyrical contributions.


   Several Hollywoodland websites are promoting Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History. I’m grateful Celebrity Hot Stuff and Hollywood Today are currently recognizing my paperback.

   Here are their links:



Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Many Happy Returns…

November 14th, 2011

Manny P. here…

   I’d like to personally thank all of my well-wishers on FACEBOOK and the other social network sites for the kind wishes on my day… If you are also celebrating your birthday today, may it be a memorable one!

   I hope everyone has a great day! That would be the best present one could receive…

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Crystal is Back on Oscar Night!

November 11th, 2011

Manny P. here…

billy crystal   Generations of movie audiences can point to Hollywood icons that have been the face of the Oscars throughout the years. Bob Hope and Johnny Carson provided decades of service, and both have added to the enduring legacy of the annual Academy Awards show. For folks of a certain age, our representative has been Billy Crystal.

   For the ninth time in the last two decades, the comedian has agreed to become the host for the 2012 ceremony. This is great news for those of us who long for Crystal’s brand of humor. Billy last emceed the seasonal event in 2004. He will  succeed Eddie Murphy, who declined the opportunity to host after next year’s show producer was replaced after making a pour comment. Robin Williams additionally turned down an invitation.

   Billy Crystal has enjoyed a fine motion picture career, carving out comedic roles in When Harry Met Sally, City Slickers, The Princess Bride, and Analyze This. His television credits included a co-starring role on Soap, and he also joined the regular cast of Saturday Night Live in 1984.

   Crystal has won a Tony award, an Emmy, and he has received several Golden Globes nominations. He was honored with a Mark Twain Prize for American Humor in 2007.

   The upcoming Academy Awards program will air on February 26, 2012.


   I’m thrilled the Cypress Public Library will carry Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History. The paperback has been added to their shelves as part of a book-building program. My Orange County, CA hometown library is the 57th literary facility to carry my work, which offers me gratification.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- We’ve Lost Another Friend…

November 8th, 2011

Manny P. here…Hal-Kanter-1-Color__111108190005-275x343

   Longtime producer, director, and writer – Hal Kanter – has died. He was best known as a contributor to the Academy Awards telecast for five decades.

   He began his career as a writer on television with such credits as the Ed Wynn Show and the George Gobel Show. Kanter also  created the landmark production of Julia with Diahann Carroll (the first African American actress to star in a situation comedy). He  produced episodes for All in the Family and Chico and the Man.

   Kanter’s motion picture screenplays include Road to Bali, Casanova’s Big Night, Loving YouBlue Hawaii, Pocketful of Miracles, Bachelor in Paradise, Move Over Darling, and Dear Brigitte. He helped Tennessee Williams turn his stage production of The Rose Tattoo into the film version.

   Kanter’s knack for comedy landed him the opportunity to work with Johnny Carson, Billy Crystal, and most recently, Chris Rock and Jon Stewart on many Oscar ceremonies. He received several Emmys for his work. He received the Paddy Chayefsky Laurel Award for Television from the Writer’s Guild of America in 1989.

   Hal Kanter was 92.

 Until next time>                              “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Fond Look at the Passing Parade…

November 5th, 2011

Manny P. here…

   I’m sorry to hear about the passing of former 60 Minutes commentator, Andy Rooney. Recently, I wrote a blog about his contributions during World War II, at CBS, andat PBS (throughout his long career). He retired just last month from the weekly news program.

   Andy Rooney was 92.

Melton, Sid<——— Sid Melton also died on Friday. The longtime character actor appeared in motion pictures and television during the Golden Ages of each medium. Following in his father’s footsteps, who was a comedian in Yiddish theatre, Melton enjoyed a six-decade show business career.

   His film credits include The Shadow of the Thin Man, On the Town, Knock on Any Door, The Geisha Boy, Lost Continent, Blondie Goes to College, and Lady Sings the Blues. On the small screen, Melton is best known for recurring roles on Make Room for Daddy, Captain MidnightGreen Acres, and The Golden Girls.

   Sid Melton was 94.

Until next time.                                “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Barrymore to Co-Host “Essentials”…

November 3rd, 2011

Manny P. here…


drew and robert   Drew Barrymore, the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild award-winning actress, has been invited to co-host the 2012 edition of The Essentials on Turner Classic Movies. She will join Robert Osborne each weekend and help hand-select classic cinema deemed essential by movie critics.  Drew Barrymore / Robert Osborne ——->

   Part of noted Hollywood royalty, Drew is the grand-daughter of John Barrymore, and the grand-niece of Lionel and Ethel. The young actress is a spokesperson for Cover Girl and Gucci products. She’s also a philanthropist and was named Ambassador Against Hunger for the United Nations World Food Program. In 2007, she received a Star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame.

   Robert Osborne is set to return to his weekday anchor duties on December 1st. The long-time host left TCM for a couple of months due to undisclosed personal and health reasons.

   The acting lineage of Drew Barrymore makes this collaboration a natural fit for the TCM segment known as The Essentials.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- ABWA Book Signing Appearance…

November 2nd, 2011

Manny P. here…

abwa   I’m attending today’s American Business Women’s Association dinner at the California Wok in Los Alamitos. Joining me will be Gary Lycan, the radio columnist of the Orange County Register.

   I’ll be signing copies of Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History, and chatting about Hollywood’s Golden Age. This members-only event begins at 4:30p.

   What a thrill to be meeting contributing members of my local business community.

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   Here’s a new location for you to pick up a copy of my paperback (on demand). This book shop and coffeehouse is located at our nation’s capital, which is incredibly exciting…

Politics and Prose Bookstore  5015 Connecticut Ave. NW, District of Columbia. Click on the link below to visit their website:


Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- November / Night of the Hunter (1955)

November 1st, 2011

(#5 in a 12-part series to be printed at the beginning of each month)

Manny P. here… nightof2

THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER – Based on the Davis Grubb 1953 bestseller, the non-fiction thriller was a finalist for the 1955 National Book Award. The novel offered the author’s account of the Harry Power’s story, who was executed in 1932 for the murders of two widows and three children in Moundsville, West Virginia.

Back Story

   First-time director Charles Laughton helped assemble a fabulous cast: Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters, Lillian Gish, James Gleason, and Peter Graves. Laughton was an Oscar-winning actor who starred in acclaimed motion pictures as The Private Life of Henry VIII, Mutiny on the Bounty, and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.

472px-Charles_Laughton   Laughton’s goal was to create a visually stunning movie based on the European cinematic approaches of German Expressionism of the 1920s and visual metaphors developed by director Fritz Lang, combined with film noir popular for a decade. He developed the elements important in modern thrillers, which inspired Hitchcock’s Psycho, Wait Until Dark, The Boston Strangler, Rosemary’s Baby, and the screen adaptation of Truman Capote’s  In Cold Blood. But, The Night of the Hunter wasn’t a success with either audiences or critics when initially release.  <——– Charles Laughton never directed another picture.


   Laughton achieved his directorial goals in his use of biblical themes, which were effectively  referenced by his cast. Camera angles were intentionally distorted, and the music score used was haunting. And, the screenplay was a fabulous collaboration by Laughton and James Agee.

Robert_Mitchum_in_My_Forbidden_Past_trailer   Robert Mitchum always felt this was his best screen role. He was correct. His menacing approach was alternately playful and frightening. Mitchum commands confidence in his portrayal, while delivering bitter patience while  searching for a hidden fortune. Burt Lancaster later mimicked elements of  Mitchum’s character in Elmer Gantry.

   The children, portrayed by Billy Chapin and Sally Jane Bruce, produced physically successful performances while playing opposite their adult counterparts. They just about steal the movie from Mitchum, who knew how to command a scene.


    The Night of the Hunter was a blueprint in the development of modern filmmaking. Quite frankly, the movie was ahead of its time. The complicated camera techniques were second only to what Orson Welles accomplished in Citizen Kane. Audiences were just not prepared for the director’s approach, which was the main reason for its lukewarm reception. Looking back, the  reaction might have been more of a glimpse at the lack of sophistication by audiences of the day. Or, the political climate generated by McCarthyism and the Cold War might have created  the desire for a more positive cinematic experience.

   Charles Laughton should have had a respected resume as a director. Instead, he glumly returned to acting. Film-goers during Hollywood’s Golden Age were the loser for this decision.

Supporting Actor Spotlight

Night of the Hunter (cast)<——–  Lillian Gish had an eight-decade career in Hollywood. Considered one of the great actresses in the annals of early cinema, she began working in silent pictures in 1912. Gish was a favorite of directors D.W. Griffith, John Huston, King Vidor, and William Dieterle. She co-starred in Birth of a Nation, Broken Blossoms, Intolerance, and Ben-Hur (MGM’s 1925 version). Lillian retired at the advent of talkies (1933) until the 1940s.

   She received a Best Supporting Actress-nomination for her performance in Duel in the Sun; and her final film was The Whales of August in 1987. Her co-stars included Bette Davis, Ann Southern, and Vincent Price. Lillian was part of acting royalty. Her sister Dorothy had a  nice movie career.

   A street in Massillon, Ohio is named after Gish, who lived there during an early period in her life, and fondly referred to it as her hometown throughout her career.

   She died of natural causes in 1993 at the age of 99.


   Charles Laughton’s final acting assignments included roles in Witness for the Prosecution (an Oscar nomination followed), Spartacus, and Advise and Consent. He was happily married to Elsa Lanchester for thirty-three years. The actor died in 1962.

220px-NightOfTheHunter    The American Film Institute and the Library of Congress are among the prestigious organizations who have lavished praise on this memorable motion picture. David Lynch, Martin Scorsese, Spike Lee, and the Coen Brothers are among today’s directors who say they have been influenced by the majesty of The Night of the Hunter.

   Harry Powell’s LOVE/HATE tattoos on his knuckles are still considered visually iconic, with creative homage provided by Dan Ackroyd in The Blues Brothers, and mentioned in The Rocky Horror Picture Show and Silence of the Lambs.

   On a personal note, actor James Gleason, who appeared in The Night of the Hunter, will have his own Chapter in my next book, Son of Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Happy Hallow’s Eve…

October 30th, 2011

Manny P. here…


   Need I say more?

Until next time…                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A British Tribute to Movie Musicals…

October 26th, 2011

Manny P. here…


   The Bridgewater Hall in Manchester is celebrating the Studio Era. Hooray For Hollywood takes us from the dawn of the talkies, to the birth of the movie musical, and into the 60s.

john wilson   The show features show-stopping sequences from 42nd Street, On The Town, Guys and Dolls, Hello Dolly, A Star Is Born, Gypsy, Ziegfeld Follies, Top Hat, etc. One performance will be presented by The John Wilson Orchestra, and critics are calling the event: Technicolor for the Ears. This concert will take place on Tuesday, November 29th at 7:30p.

   The Bridgewater Hall is located at Lower Mosley St., Manchester, UK. The Hall is home to three resident orchestras: the Hallé, theBBC Philharmonic, and Manchester Camerata.

JOHN WILSON logo-trans

   If you are making plans on visiting the United Kingdom next month, put this on your calendar as a place to check while on vacation.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Closing the Curtain on the Silent Era!

October 25th, 2011

Manny P. here… Barbara_Kent_Stars_of_the_Photoplay

   And then there were none… The last film star from Hollywood’s Silent Era has died. Barbara Kent had a substantial career before Jolson uttered his first words on screen in 1927. She also dabbled in movies during the advent of the Studio Era before retiring in 1935.

   Barbara Kent was a Canadian-born student, who won the Miss Hollywood Pageant in 1925, the same year she graduated from  Hollywood High School. Universal Studios contracted the teen later that year. Her major film debut was impressive portraying a femme fetale opposite John Gilbert and Greta Garbo in Flesh and the Devil. She excelled in comedies playing opposite Harold Lloyd, Reginald Denny, Oliver Hardy, and Rex – the Wonder Horse!         BARBARA KENT

   Her transition to talkies was seamless appearing in Feet First (again with Harold Lloyd), and the first sound version of Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist in 1933. Ironically, she lost interest in continuing to act in motion pictures after she got married to a talent agent.

   Barbara Kent was 103.

Until next time>                              “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- The Harlow Collection…

October 24th, 2011

Manny P. here…Jean_Harlow_in_Riffraff_trailer_cropped

   Before Marilyn Monroe and Betty Grable, their was Jean Harlow ->  Nicknamed The Platinum Blonde, she’s considered one of the greatest actresses who ever lived, despite a career barely lasting a decade. MGM often cited that her films were the biggest box office draws for any particular year in the early-to-mid 1930s. Her premature death in 1937 due to complications from renal failure  added to her legend.

   Harlow clearly rivaled other actors of the day for popularity, such as Marie Dressler, Wallace Beery, Clark Gable, William Powell, and Spencer Tracy at her studio; and Marlene Dietrich, Mae West, Gary Cooper, and Cary Grant on other lots. Her immense talent was overshadowed by her celebrity status as a beautiful woman.

harlow box set   The Jean Harlow: 100th Anniversary Collection is expected to be released on November 7th, and available through Movies Unlimited, the WB Online Store, and other locations. It contains remastered versions of some of her popular pictures and lost classics, including Bombshell, Personal Property Riffraff, and her last film, Saratoga.

   This particular collection has never been available on DVD, and is the perfect holiday gift for any lover of classic cinema. Special features: a portfolio of seven MGM studio portraits and newly discovered trailers.

   Jean Harlow, born in 1911, would have been 100 on March 3rd of this year.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Remembering Robert Pierpoint

October 23rd, 2011

Manny P. here…pierpointatwhitehouse_rdax_396x220

   Former CBS News legend Robert Pierpoint has died. In his first big assignment, he provided live reports during the Korean War. He later became a White House correspondent, covering every president from Eisenhower through Carter. Pierpoint is also remembered for playing himself on the radio during the final episode of M*A*S*H. He’s the voice you hear announcing the end of the Korean conflict. During his career, he received two Emmys for his work.  ROBERT PIERPOINT

   A close friend to radio legend Edward R. Murrow, Pierpoint appeared on the first edition of See It Now in 1951. He was also a frequent contributor on Charles Kuralt’s Sunday Morning broadcasts, reporting from the State Department until his retirement. Bob covered breaking news on monumental events in American history, including the Cold War, President Kennedy’s assassination, and President Nixon’s resignation. He became chief diplomatic correspondent in 1980.

   During his time as a correspondent, Pierpoint became a close friend of eventual President George H. W. Bush, often spending time with him on tennis courts. As doubles partners, they won several CBS tennis competitions together.

   In his 1981 memoirs, At the White House: Assignment to Six Presidents, he cited that one mistake he made over his years was failing to mention about the stains on Jackie Kennedy’s pink outfit after she left her husband’s side at Parkland Hospital in Dallas on November 22, 1963. “I didn’t describe the blood, and I should have”, he wrote, “I was in shock.”

   Robert Pierpoint was 86.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- My Distributor’s New Online Store!

October 21st, 2011

Manny P. here…

Danforth new logo

   Danforth Book Distribution has completely reworked their website, and it now includes an online store to buy literary product including Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History. Credit cards and Pay Pal are cheerfully accepted.

   According to their press release:

We are venturing into new and exciting times at Danforth Book Distribution. We recently had our very first own booth at BookFest 2011, and it went so well, we plan on hitting up the trade show scene in the upcoming future.

   Check out the photos below taken at the recent 2011 Northwest BookFest in Kirkland, WA while I was conducting a book signing at the Danforth Book Distribution booth.

   Northwest Book Fair Signing Pic

   Please follow the following links below for all your purchase needs or information:




   Congratulations to Laura Danforth and her team for her company’s  expansion!

Until next time>                               “never forget”