“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”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Fallen Giant…

May 22nd, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Clint Walker was an actor, who had a steady career in film and television. He is best remembered for his starring turn on Cheyenne. Walker had good looks and an imposing physique (6′, 6″ tall).                           CLINT WALKER —>

“`Clint began his movie career with a small role in the Ten Commandments. Actor Van Johnson saw the ruggedly handsome Walker and encouraged him to give the movies a try. This brought him to the attention of Warner Brothers, which was developing a television Western. The studio believed they dicovered a new on-screen hero in their stable of stars. During this time, Clint also had a modest singing career.

“`Walker had roles in The Night of the Grizzly, None But the BraveThe Dirty Dozen, The Great Bank Robbery, and the cinematic adaptation of Maverick. On television, Clint guest-starred on The Jack Benny Program, The Lucy Show, and The Love Boat.

“`In May 1971, he had nearly fatal skiing accident on Mammoth Mountain, but he recovered.

“`Clint Walker was 91.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Now Showing…

May 22nd, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`William Gold was a graphic designer best known for thousands of film poster designs. During his 70-year career Gold worked with Hollywood’s greatest filmmakers,  such as Alfred Hitchcock, Elia Kazan, Ridley Scott, Laurence Olivier, Stanley Kubrick, Clint Eastwood, and many more. Bill’s body of work transcends Hollywood’s Golden Age.  WILLIAM GOLD –>

“`After studying illustration in college, Bill began his professional design career in 1941 in the advertising department of Warner Brothers. William became head of poster design in 1947. After his initial film project, Yankee Doodle Dandy, he continued to work for eight decades, and has inspired numerous other designers.

         

“`Gold’s prolific assignments included Casablanca, The Big Sleep, Strangers on a TrainA Streetcar Named Desire, Dial M for Murder, East of Eden, Mr. Roberts, Baby Doll, Giant, Moby Dick, The Searchers, The Wrong Man, A Face in the Crowd, GypsyThe Pajama Game, The Old Man and the Sea, Splendor in the Grass, The Music Man, My Fair Lady, Robin and the 7 Hoods, Bullitt,  Sex and the Single Girl, The Great Race, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf, Bonnie and Clyde, Cool Hand Luke, Wait Until Dark, CamelotFunny GirlRyan’s DaughterLady Sings the Blues, Fiddler on the Roof, A Clockwork OrangeThe Way We WereKluteThe StingDeliverance, The Exorcist, PapillonDiamonds are ForeverPlatoonWhat’s Up Doc?, The Sugarland Express, Dog Day Afternoon,  All the President’s Men, The Great Santini, Barry LyndonThe UntouchablesOn Golden Pond, My Favorite Year, UnforgivenMississippi Burning, Mystic River, In the Line of Fire, and his final work, J. Edgar; plus hundreds more.

         

“`In 1994, Gold was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Hollywood Reporter.  Throughout his career, Bill maintained active membership in the Society of Illustrators, Art Directors Club, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  Six assignments eventually won an Oscar for Best Picture.

“`William Gold was 96.

=================================== 

“`Richard Goodwin was a speechwriter and an adviser to John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson and Robert Kennedy. Richard was also wed to historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. Besides a career in politics, he is best known for work as a special counsel to the Legislative Oversight Subcommittee of the United States House of Representatives.  Goodwin investigated the Twenty-One game show scandal, which became the basis for the film  Quiz Show in 1994. He was portrayed by actor Rob Morrow.

“`Richard Goodwin (right) was 86.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Hollywood History Preservation…

May 21st, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`American Film Institute founder and the  Kennedy Center Honors creator George Stevens Jr. is adding another chapter to cinematic history by donating hundreds of items spanning several generations of his family to the Margaret Herrick Library and its archive. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that Stevens Jr.  will be contributing papers, letters, photographs, and scripts from his life to the Stevens Family collection.

“`This public collection of over  600 items will cover everything from his Hollywood beginnings working with his father George Stevens, the legendary director of classics like Woman of the Year. The collection is a film buffs dream, where an ordinary family photo could be on the set of Shane, at the Academy Awards in 1951 when Stevens was nominated for A Place in the Sun, or during the Amsterdam production of The Diary of Anne Frank with cinematographer Jack Cardiff.

“`Collection highlights on the movie academy’s website include personal photos of Stevens Jr., including one of him standing alongside, Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean, and his father in Marfa, Texas in 1955 on the set of Giant. There are photos of James Cagney getting an  AFI Lifetime Achievement Award, Plus, Sidney Poitier in The Greatest Story Ever Told, his casting of the actor would lead to a lifelong friendship.

“`You will also notice Stevens Jr. being sworn in at the United States Information Agency, or speaking with Jacqueline Kennedy. He worked with Edward R. Murrow at the  USIA during the Kennedy administration. Stevens Jr. produced the short film detailing President Kennedy’s trips in June 1963, including his famous visit to Germany, and his Ich bin ein Berliner speech. It would be nominated for an Oscar.

“`What a treasure trove of Hollywood and American history from George Steven Jr. (above), and his iconic family!

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

“`Patricia Morison was a femme fatale in familiar films that featured iconic heroes and sleuths, such as The Cisco KidThe Thin Man, and Sherlock Holmes. When she starred on Broadway, Morison achieved her greatest familiarity as the lead in the original production of Cole Porter’s Kiss Me Kate. Her films roles included Without Love, The Song of BernadetteDressed to Kill and Song of the Thin Man. Patricia appeared on stage with Yul Brynner in The King and I. She was one of the many celebrities who entertained allied troops during USO tours of Great Britain.

“`Patricia Morison (right) was 103.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Disney’s Nine Old Men…

May 20th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`The Walt Disney Family Museum is unveiling its newest special exhibition, Walt Disney’s Nine Old Men: Masters of Animation, on display to the public from May 17th, 2018 through January 7th, 2019 in the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall.

   

“`This unique exhibit celebrates the distinctive talents and contributions of The Walt Disney Studios most celebrated artists, playfully dubbed the Nine Old Men by Walt. The famed nine were: Les Clark, Ward Kimball, Eric Larson, John Lounsbery, Wolfgang Reitherman, Milt Kahl, Ollie Johnston, Marc Davis, and Frank Thomas.

“`Masters of Animation features artwork and family artifacts from the Nine Old Men, including sketchbooks, caricatures, and snapshots, as well as original art from classic animated movies, such as PinocchioBambiPeter PanLady and the Tramp, and Sleeping Beauty.

“`Never-before-seen personal etchings, paintings, sculptures, concept artwork, and character drawings (including Mickey Mouse)  will be on display, alongside documentary interviews with these masters of animation, as well as rarely exhibited pencil tests and final color scenes that showcase their genius.

“`This original exhibit is curated by Don Hahn, the Oscar-nominated producer of Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. Hahn conducted extensive research on the Nine Old Men, and spent treasured time with each of the animators’ families for in-depth discussions, unearthing details about the unique backgrounds and personalities of the artists behind iconic the Disney characters and films.

“`The Walt Disney Family Museum is located at 104 Montgomery St. in the Presidio of San Francisco, just a stone’s throw from the Golden Gate Bridge.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A British Fairy Tale…

May 19th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`It has occurred before; notably when actress Grace Kelly became Princess Grace of Monaco. The tradition continues when England’s Prince Harry and actress Meghan Markle will wed in an Anglican service with American flavor, mixing prayers, classical music, a gospel choir, and soul sounds. Kensington Palace has released the order of service for this ceremony in 15th-century St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.

“`This service is led by the Dean of Windsor, David Conner. Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will solemnize the marriage, and head of the United States Episcopal Church, Michael Bruce Curry, will deliver a sermon. Markle, who attended a Roman Catholic school, has been baptized into the Church of England (which Queen Elizabeth II is supreme governor), as she prepares to join the royal family.

“`All are waiting to see what Markle wears, which designer she has chosen for her wedding gown. Prince Charles, Harry’s father, will walk her down the aisle after Markle’s dad became too sick to come. Meghan’s mum will be sitting close by. And in the gallery, some of Harry’s buddies from his 10 years of military service — an experience that included tours of duty in Afghanistan — and from many charities he supports, which focuses on helping veterans, or encouraging a more open discussion of mental health issues.

“`The couple consulted Harry’s father Prince Charles about the orchestral music played before the service.  Selections include works by Johann Sebastian Bach, Edward Elgar, Gabriel Faure, and Franz Schubert. The chapel choir will perform a motet by 16th-century composer Thomas Tallis. A London-based gospel ensemble, Kingdom Choir, will sing Ben E. King’s Stand By Me. Jane Fellowes, the sister of Princess Diana, will read from the biblical Song of Solomon.

“`The ceremony is based on Common Worship — a most modern of Church of England service options — and includes prayers and hymns, as well as readings and musical selections chosen by the couple and their family. The Church of England doesn’t allow couples to write their own wedding vows — they have to stick to the script. Meghan and Harry will vow:

To have and to hold, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part.

“`In front of 600 wedding guests, including Oprah Winfrey, George Clooney, Elton John, Spice Girl Victoria Beckham, sports stars David Beckham and Serena Williams, and actor Idris Elba, Meghan and Harry will exchange rings to:

Those whom God has joined together let no one put asunder.

“`After guests deliver God Save the Queen,  Britain’s national anthem, the newlyweds will exit the chapel to strains of an allegro from Symphony No. One by 18th-century composer William Boyce, and the gospel sounds of Amen / This Little Light of Mine.

“`After the ceremony, the newlyweds will be in a horse-drawn carriage through the streets of Windsor flanked by a British military procession with officers on horseback. Then they are off to a couple of gala receptions. The first is hosted in the afternoon by the queen — with finger foods, wine, and champagne.  A second smaller reception is being thrown by Charles. To kick off the festivities, the queen honored her grandson with a new title: Duke of Sussex, making the 36-year-old Markle the Duchess of Sussex.

“`The wedding marks a new chapter in the sovereign history of the monarchy:  The addition of an American woman with biracial roots to its upper ranks. Harry’s status as a English royal and Markle’s entertainment industry presence on the television series Suits  has turned Saturday’s wedding into a global event. This is Hollywood royalty colliding with a storied British monarchy.

“`Plus, even though she is divorced, Meghan Markle is no Wallis Simpson!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- So Long to a Television Icon…

May 17th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Joseph Campanella was a character actor who appeared in over 200 television and movie roles. He had a familiar face to fans of Hollywood. Campanella is best remembered for his recurring part on Mannix and on the rotating series, The Bold Ones:  The Lawyers. He was also a regular on daytime soap operas — The Bold and the BeautifulThe Guiding Light, and Days of Our Lives.  JOSEPH CAMPANELLA ->

“`Joseph attended Columbia University where he studied drama. By 1952, he was being cast in movies. He appeared in Murder Inc., The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre,  The President’s Plane is Missing, Ben, and Meteor.

“`It was on the small screen where Campanella really shined. He guest-starred in CombatNaked CityThe Untouchables, Medical CenterThe Big ValleyMarcus Welby M.D.Mission: ImpossiblePolice StoryThe F.B.I.Alias Smith and Jones, The Invaders, McCloudIronsideThe FugitiveThe Wild Wild WestThe Mary Tyler Moore Show, GunsmokeFantasy IslandThe Rockford Files, One Day at a Time, Mama’s Family, The Colbys, DallasNight GalleryMurder She Wrote, and The Golden Girls. Joe was also the familiar voice for BMW commercials.

“`The durable Joseph Campanella was 93.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- The State of Politics…

May 16th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`For the first time since 1998, Los Angeles Conservancy will host a Last Remaining Seats screening at downtown’s State Theatre! This film palace has a rich history, and is filled with beautiful features. It recently served as a church, which is common for historic theaters.

“`The scheduled screening is Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, a 1939 classic that stars James Stewart and Jean Arthur. The central theme of this motion picture is the nature of political corruption and graft that takes place in the senate. Many of the character actors featured in my Forgotten Hollywood book series appear in the ageless classic, such as Claude Rains, Beulah Bondi, Thomas Mitchell, Jack Carson, and in my upcoming release, Edward Arnold.

“`A free Q&A session about the theatre will follow the screening. Learn more about the history and architecture. They will also have an after-party at iconic Cliftons. You can enjoy the event on Saturday, June 2nd at 8p.

“`Los Angeles Conservancy is the nonprofit member organization that works through education and advocacy to recognize, revitalize, and preserve the historic architectural and cultural resources of Los Angeles County. A private, membership nonprofit, the Conservancy began as part of a drive to prevent demolition of the  Los Angeles Public Library in 1978.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”-The Bonfire of Tom Wolfe…

May 15th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`You only had to observe him — in his white suits and two-tone shoes —  or read his books as The Bonfire of the Vanities and The Right Stuff to know Mr. Tom Wolfe (right) was like no other scribe. Inspired by the writings of French novelist Emile Zola and other authors of realistic fiction, the stylishly-attired Wolfe was a maverick who insisted the only way to tell a great tale was to go and report it. His contemporaries were Gay Talese, Nora Ephron, and Truman Capote, and he helped demonstrate that journalism could offer the kinds of literary pleasure found in books.

“`Wolfe had an unsuccessful pitching tryout with the New York Giants before heading to Yale University, where he earned his Ph.D. in American studies. In 1957, Tom joined the Springfield paper and instantly fell in love with journalism. Two years later, he went to The Washington Post, where he earned Washington Newspaper Guild awards in 1960 for his coverage of United States-Cuban affairs, and his account of that year’s Senate Civil Rights filibuster. He eventually worked with Jimmy Breslin at the now-defunct New York Herald Tribune.

“`Wolfe traveled during the 1960s with Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters for his book on the psychedelic culture, The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. He mingled happily with hippies and published in Rolling Stone;  but, was a supporter of Ronald Reagan. Tom’s legacy was tangible to countless newspaper and magazine writers. However, he had many detractors — including fellow writers, Norman Mailer and John Updike, and critic James Wood. Eventually, Wolfe would define the Me-generation of the 1980s as a response to his adversaries.

“`Wolfe enjoyed the highest commercial and critical rewards.  His literary honors included the American Book Award (now called the National Book Award) for The Right Stuff; and a nomination for the National Book Critics Circle prize for The Bonfire of the Vanities, one of the Top 10 selling books of the 1980s. But, the cinematic version that starred Tom Hanks and Bruce Willis was disastrous.

“`A hyperbolic upstart, with his words jumping off each page, Tom Wolfe was 88.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Super Loss…

May 14th, 2018

Manny P. here… 

“`Margot Kidder was a fiery actress, who starred as Lois Lane opposite Christopher Reeve in the Superman movie franchise of the 1970s and 1980s. Both remained known almost entirely for their respective roles, struggling to find other opportunities. She and Reeve were considered unknowns when they got their leading parts in the first of four films in 1978, which also starred Gene Hackman and Marlon Brando. The flick, directed by Richard Donner, was a superhero blockbuster two decades before comic book movies became the norm at the box office. It is the inspiration for creators of today’s Marvel and D.C. films.

“`Born in Canada, Kidder was inspired to act while in a Broadway audience enjoying Bye Bye Birdie. Her interest led to television work on Canadian television. During a 1970 interview on The Dick Cavett Show, Margot expressed her ambivalence toward having a film career, and was considering working as a film editor in the future. Hollywood became interested.

“`Movie roles include The Great Waldo Pepper, The Reincarnation of Peter Proud, and 92 in the Shade. After success in Superman, she starred in The Amityville Horror and a cinematic version of Maverick. On television, Kidder appeared in BarettaThe Mod Squad, Banacek, Barnaby Jones, and Murder She Wrote.

“`Kidder dated former Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, directors Brian De Palma and Steven Spielberg, and comedian Richard Pryor. She was briefly married to actor John Heard. Margot always maintained her friendship with Reeve.

“`Kidder spent the last decade of her life residing in Montana. She also suffered from bipolar disorder, struggling with it for most of her life. After recovering, she became an advocate for mental health awareness. Kidder engaged in political activism with regards to environmental issues, and actively protested against United States military action in Iraq.

“`Margot Kidder (above) was 69.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Celebrating Private Ryan…

May 11th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`To commemorate Saving Private Ryan’s 20th anniversary, The National WWII Museum Institute for the Study of War and Democracy will hold an event retrospective with D-Day scholars, cinematic historians, and production insiders. This all-day symposium takes place on June 7th.

TOM SIZEMORE      TOM HANKS

“`Panel sessions will include conversations about the historical foundation and accuracy of the movie, a behind-the-scenes view of the making of the flick, how D-Day has been portrayed in other films since the war (including The Longest Day), and lasting legacy of Saving Private Ryan beyond its awards and box-office receipts.

“`In 1998, theater audiences collectively experienced the closest thing to the horrors faced on Omaha Beach during the D-Day invasions on June 6, 1944. In its opening 30 minutes, Saving Private Ryan brought to life the terror of this campaign, as ramps of countless Higgins boats dropped to launch what proved to be the most important battle of the 20th century, fought by what Tom Brokaw calls our Greatest Generation.

“`The National WWII Museum is located at the US Freedom Pavilion: The Boeing Center, 945 Magazine St, New Orleans, LA.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Coates of Arms…

May 9th, 2018

Manny P. here…

“`Oscar-winning film editor Anne V. Coates is considered one of the greatest in her field, whose credits include such works as Lawrence of Arabia, The Elephant Man, and Fifty Shades of Grey. Coates edited dozens of movies during a 60-year career, and savored her collaborations with Clint Eastwood, David Lean, and Steven Soderbergh, among others. Her assignments would include historical epics, art-house favorites, and light comedy.

“`Born in Reigate, England, Coates first became a fan of film after a high school field trip to view an adaptation of Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights that starred Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon. While she found the book extremely boring, the film was a thrill. The niece of British film mogul J. Arthur Rank, Coates tried to break into the industry as a director in the 1950s , but soon turned to editing, a line of work much more open for women. Anne quickly learned her craft in assisting Reginald Mills on projects as Michael Powell’s The Red Shoes. For a time, she worked at Pinewood Studios.

“`Coates won a competitive Oscar for 1962’s Lawrence of Arabia, and nominated four other times, for  Becket, The Elephant Man, In the Line of Fire, and Out of Sight. She was also BAFTA-nominated four times. Other movies Coates worked on include Murder on the Orient Express, Ragtime, Chaplin, and  Erin Brockovich. In 2016, Coates was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

“`Coates has been compared to iconic women editors:  Dorothy Spencer, Margaret Booth, and Verna Fields. Perhaps her most famous edit is the match cut from Lawrence of Arabia, which juxtaposes a shot of T. E. Lawrence (played by Peter O’Toole) blowing out a match with one of the sun rising on the desert horizon.  It is a scene that reportedly inspired Steven Spielberg to make films. That is quite a claim.

“`Anne V. Coates (above) was 92.

Until next time>                               “never forget”