“Forgotten Hollywood”- Farewell to a Legend…

May 11th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Norman Lloyd had a long career as an actor and director and his pals once included Jean Renoir, Alfred Hitchcock, Charlie Chaplin, Gregory Peck, Ingrid Bergman, and Orson Welles. The man was a walking encyclopedia of Tinsel Town. With an erudite manner, He enchanted audiences with his Hollywood stories.

NORMAN LLOYD

“`Lloyd’s mother took him to Broadway shows and it instilled a love of acting that he began pursuing as a boy in local shows. He was still a teenager when he dropped out of New York University to pursue entertainment full time. He made his stage debut in 1935.

“`Lloyd joined the Mercury Theatre in 1936. It was founded by Welles and John Houseman. He eventually went to work with Hitchcock, which led to his 1942 film debut in Saboteur, in which his title character perishes in a memorable scene —  falling from the Statue of Liberty. Lloyd also appeared in Spellbound with Peck and Limelight with Chaplin (a frequent tennis partner).

“`Hitch hired Lloyd as the director of  Alfred Hitchcock Presents despite the fact that the actor was blacklisted as a Communist. In the 1950s, he directed a five-part television series about Abraham Lincoln.  He gave Stanley Kubrick his first substantial work on this particular project.

“`Other cinematic credits include The Age of Innocence and Dead Poet’s Society. His last screen appearance was in 2015 in Trainwreck.  On television, a earned a new generation of viewers with his weekly role on St. Elsewhere. His character was diagnosed terminal cancer in the first episode, yet lasted the entire run of the series. He also guest-starred in Wiseguy, The Practice, Murder She Wrote, and Modern Family.

“`Lloyd appeared in the earliest surviving footage of television, a segment of The Streets of New York from 1939. It was his first screen credit. He did not give up tennis until suffering a fall at age one hundred and was still driving at ninety-nine.

“`One of the last links to Hollywood Golden Age, Norman Lloyd was 106.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- When I Visited a TCM Festival…

May 8th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`A couple of years back, I was fortunate to attend the TCM Film Festival and I documented it for the TherapyCable Channel. Since the virtual festival is this weekend, I thought it would be fun once again to share my report. That day, I met Shirley MacLaine and Leonard Maltin.

“`Enjoy!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- See You in September…

May 6th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Live Broadway shows will return to the stage beginning September 14th, after an eighteen-month hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Tickets are going on sale this week and theaters will be allowed to fill to one-hundred percent of capacity.  Broadway theaters are traditionally among New York’s biggest tourist attractions.

“`Live theater is one of the last sectors to return because of social distancing challenges for actors on stage, for crews backstage, and for audiences in cramped seating in old buildings. While New York plans to lift most pandemic restrictions in two weeks, Broadway needs more time for rehearsals, marketing to draw crowds and other steps.

“`Producers will work with state authorities on what safety measures will be required. It is possible theaters will mandate proof of a coronavirus vaccination for audience members.

“`Thousands of actors, dancers, musicians, and backstage crew were thrown out of work when Broadway theaters closed in March, 2020. Some shows, including the hit musicals Frozen and Mean Girls, have said they will not come back. Thirty-one shows were in production when the shutdown began, including hits such as Hamilton, The Lion King, and Wicked.

“`Each returning show will announce its re-opening date in the coming weeks.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Virtual Return…

May 4th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`The TCM Film Festival returns Thursday with a virtual presentation on two platforms:  Turner Classic Movie and HBO Max. I will be providing updates on the daily activities during the event.

“`The fest starts off with a 60th anniversary presentation of West Side Story.  On hand to chat about the film will be Rita Moreno, Russ Tamblyn, and George Chakiris. Later this year, Steven Spielberg debuts his updated version of the classic musical. Moreno is a co-producer and will also appear in the re-boot.

 

“`Other celebrities participating in this year’s festivities include Rob Reiner, Danny Glover, and Ali MacGraw. Martin Scorsese will introduce his seminal films, Mean Streets and GoodFellas, to the virtual audience.

“`Here is hoping that next year, the TCM Film Festival will return live to Hollywood.  In the meantime, enjoy the four-day lineup. For more information, including a How To Fest guide, please visit http://filmfestival.tcm.com.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Moonstruck Career…

May 1st, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Olympia Dukakis won an Oscar for her role in the 1987 romantic film comedy Moonstruck. That performance changed the trajectory of her steady career. She was also a cousin of unsuccessful 1988 Democratic United States presidential nominee Michael Dukakis.

“`Prior to her time on the big screen, Dukakis began her decades-long stage life working in 1961 in productions at the Williamstown Summer Theater in a town in Massachusetts.  She won an Obie Award for Best Actress  in 1963 for her Off-Broadway performance in Bertolt Brecht’s Man Equals Man.

“`With her hubby Louis Zorich, Dukakis co-founded the Whole Theater Company in Montclair, New Jersey. With Dukakis serving as Artistic Director, the theater rolled out five productions a season over almost two decades. Across that span, productions included the works of Eugene O’Neill, Samuel Beckett, Tennessee Williams and Edward Albee. Among the actors performing with Olympia were Jose Ferrer, Colleen Dewhurst, Blythe Danner, and Samuel L. Jackson.

“`Dukakis became a household name after co-starring with Cher in Moonstruck. Her other movie credits include Working Girl, Steel Magnolias, Mighty Aphrodite, Mr. Holland’s Opus and the Look Who’s Talking series of flicks. She was still working at the time of her passing. A documentary called Olympia was released last year celebrating her long career.

“`Olympia Dukakis brought warmth, humor, and wit to every part. She was eighty-nine.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Two For the Passing Parade…

April 30th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`We lost two celebs this week and let us honor their passing.

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

~ Anne Douglas was the wife of Kirk Douglas and a producer known for philanthropy work. She was the step mother to Michael Douglas.

“`Born in Hannover, Germany, her effort to escape the Nazi-occupied country led the young girl to France. Her fluency in German, English, French, and Italian enabled her to work with a French film distributor, leading to a career in the movie industry. Anne later met Kirk in 1953 when he offered her a job as his publicist while in Paris to film Act of Love. The couple wed in Las Vegas in 1954. Anne and Kirk Douglas ->

“`Despite her deep ties to Hollywood, Douglas’ most significant impact was done through her philanthropy work. She was the driving force in the building of the Los Angeles County Music Center and served on the boards of The Mark Taper Forum and the Center Theater Group. In addition to being an original founder of the Cedars-Sinai Research for Women’s Cancers, she also championed the Anne Douglas Center for Women at the Los Angeles Mission.

“`Anne Douglas was 102.

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

~ Johnny Crawford was best known for his iconic role as Mark McCain in the ABC series The Rifleman. He was also an original Mouseketeer.

“`Crawford’s career kicked off when when appearing in the first season of The Mickey Mouse Club. On The Rifleman, he garnered an Emmy nomination when he was thirteen. Other television roles included guest-starring opportunities on Rawhide, Wagon Train, The Lone Ranger, Mr. Ed, and Hawaii 5-0.

“`Born into a family that celebrated music and theater, Crawford grew up in the shadow of his paternal grandfather working for Irving Berlin. He had a chart topping hit in 1962 with Cindy’s Birthday.

“`A victim of Covid-19, Johnny Crawford (above right) was seventy-five.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Celebrating Movie Musicals…

April 26th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Celebrating Act 2 takes a look at popular songs from seldom seen movie musicals. Art Kirsch and John Coleman joins in on the discussion.

“`Enjoy!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Fritz…

April 19th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Walter Mondale was the first major United States party presidential nominee to pick a woman running mate (Geraldine Ferraro). Mondale believed in an activist government, and worked for civil rights, school integration, consumer protection, and farm and labor interests as the senator and vice president during Jimmy Carter’s troubled presidency from 1977 to 1981.  A leading liberal Democratic advocate of the late twentieth century, he lost in a landslide to Ronald Reagan in the 1984 presidential election. He was known as Fritz to his friends.

“`Minnesota has historically been dominated by farming and mining and it has had a tradition of liberal, populist politics supported by many of the Scandinavian-American residents like the Norwegian Mondale family. After serving in the military, Mondale earned his law degree at the University of Minnesota. His political career started with his work on the re-election campaign of Hubert Humphrey, then mayor of Minneapolis.

“`Mondale was a protege of Humphrey, who lost the 1968 presidential election to Republican Richard Nixon. He succeeded Humphrey in the Senate, arriving in Washington during Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society,  a time of great hope for liberals, though the optimism was crushed by the Vietnam War.  Mondale served in the Senate until elected as vice president in Carter’s 1976 victory over incumbent Gerald Ford, who became president after Nixon resigned due to the Watergate corruption scandal. He is credited for elevating the importance of the office of Vice President during his term in office.

“`Mondale served as United States ambassador to Japan during the Bill Clinton administration. He retired after his final assignment.

“`Plans for memorials are expected to be announced for both Minnesota and Washington D. C. Walter Mondale (left) was ninety-three.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Celebrating Spence…

April 18th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`The Forgotten Hollywood book series keeps me active chatting about the character actors of Hollywood’s Golden Age. I rarely get to wax eloquent about my all time favorite movie star. On Celebrating Act 2, John Coleman and Art Kirsch allow me the treasured opportunity to analyze the career of the great Spencer Tracy.

“`Enjoy!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Remembering a Fur Ball…

April 16th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Felix Silla was best known as the mumbling Cousin Itt on the 1960s ABC sitcom The Addams Family. He portrayed Cousin Itt seventeen times on the show, which lasted just two seasons, but has lived on in reruns and syndication.

“`Silla came to the United States in 1955. He toured for seven years with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus —  he was a trapeze artist and could ride bareback — before arriving in Hollywood as a stuntman in 1962. Just under four feet tall and weighing seventy pounds, He initially appeared on The Addams Family in 1965 in the series’ twentieth episode.

“`Other television appearances include Buck Rogers in the 25th Century, H. R. Pufnstuf, Bonanza and the pilot of Star Trek. On the big screen, Silla co-starred in A Ticklish Affair, Planet of the Apes, The Black Bird, Point Blank, Star Wars: Episode VI  —  Return of the Jedi, The Kentucky Fried Movie, and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.  He did stunt work on The Towering Inferno, E. T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Howard the Duck, Poltergeist, The Hindenburg, and Batman Returns.

 “`Felix Silla was eighty-four.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- It’s a Sad Sad Sad Sad Closing…

April 14th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Arguably the defining mid-century movie palace of Los Angeles, the Cinerama Dome, which debuted in 1963, is one of Hollywood’s most enduring and instantly recognizable architectural landmarks. Now, it is set to shut down as part of the Arclight closures announced this week.

“`When the Cinerama Dome and its curved,  eighty-six-foot-wide screen debuted following the breakneck sixteen-week construction period for the premiere of Stanley Kramer’s  It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, this was the first new major movie theater to be built in Hollywood in over thirty years. Kramer’s film, a single-lens Cinerama production, enjoyed a whopping sixty-six-week run!

 

“`On a personal note, I was at an opening of Back to the Future a number of years back at the Dome. I was also lucky enough to see It’s a Mad Mad Mad World when it made one of its many returns to the iconic theater.

“`Long among the highest-grossing theaters in America, the Dome is the latest casualty of the pandemic that has kept many of the world’s cinemas closed for more than a year. Fortunately, the Cinerama Dome secured city landmark status in 1998 from the Los Angeles Conservancy. This means that there is almost no chance for the structure to be torn down.

“`Will it ever re-open? That is the real question.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Magnificent Search…

April 13th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Turner Classic Movies is joining filmmaker Joshua Grossberg, who is leading a second search to Brazil to locate missing reels of the 1942 production The Magnificent Ambersons in the hope of restoring the film for the big screen. TCM is sponsoring the latest leg of Grossberg’s search and producing a documentary entitled, The Search for the Lost Print:  The Making of Orson Welles’  The Magnificent Ambersons.  This celluloid chronicle will cover the twenty-five-year effort Grossberg has already endured to attempt to find it.

“`Here is the back story…  After disastrous test screenings of The Magnificent Ambersons, the movie studio RKO decided to prune forty-three minutes from the production and added a new, more optimistic ending, all without Welles permission.  This original footage was melted down for its nitrate for use in World War II and has been considered lost ever since. However, one celluloid copy was sent to the director who was working in Brazil on his next flick. Welles would walk away from Hollywood and forge a path as an independent storyteller and director for the rest of his career.

“`Grossberg’s return trip to Brazil begins in Fall 2021. The Search for the Lost Print will include production photos and first-hand accounts from those who viewed it and chronicle the story of Grossberg’s search as well as discuss Welles’ exile from Hollywood after the events.

“`This documentary premieres on TCM in July 2022 to honor the film’s eightieth anniversary. If a print is found and in viable condition, Grossberg and TCM will restore  The Magnificent Ambersons to premiere alongside the documentary’s release.

“`Grossberg and TCM released a video on Instagram announcing the project and his quest to find the lost cut. Click on the link to watch:

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- For Queen and Country…

April 9th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Prince Philip was Queen Elizabeth’s husband who helped modernize the monarchy and steer the British royal family through repeated crises during seven decades of service. The Duke of Edinburgh, as he was officially known, had been by his bride’s side throughout her sixty-nine-year reign, the longest in British history. During that time, he earned a reputation for a tough, no-nonsense attitude.

“`Phillip was born on the island of Corfu on June 10, 1921,  the fifth child and the only son of Prince Andrew of Greece. A former naval officer who served in the Royal Navy during the war, he was mentioned in dispatches for bravery. Phillip was a qualified pilot and an accomplished sailor. His wartime service saw him present at the 1945 Japanese surrender in Tokyo Bay.

“`Distant relations, Philip married Elizabeth in 1947. He found it difficult to give up the military career he loved and to take on the job as the monarch’s consort, for which there was no clear-cut provision.  While constitutionally excluded from vast areas of the Queen’s professional life, he feared the monarchy could become a political museum piece. His suggestions affected royal protocol, and he tackled such issues as conservation, science, industry and religion. Phillip also took a keen interest in young people. Personal family decisions were a joint effort made by the Queen and her Prince.

 

PRINCE PHILLIP (THE DUKE OF EDINBURGH)    QUEEN ELIZABETH II

“`Phillip has been portrayed on celluloid in the film, The Queen, and on the Netflix series, The Crown. Actors taking on the role include James Cromwell, Tobias Menzies, Matt Smith and Christopher Lee.

“`Assigned to a lifetime of service, Phillip made over 22,000 solo appearances. He retired from public life in August 2017.  His final official appearance was last July at a military ceremony at Windsor Castle. He spent four weeks in hospital earlier this year for treatment for an infection and to have a heart procedure, but returned to Windsor in early March.

“`The coronavirus pandemic could have an impact on carefully established plans for Phillip’s funeral. With restrictions still in place amid the Covid-19 outbreak, all public elements of the final farewell will not be able to take place in their original form. Flags at Buckingham Palace and at government buildings across Britain were lowered to half-mast and within an hour of the announcement, the public began to lay flowers outside Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace.

“`Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh was ninety-nine.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Television Loses Two…

April 5th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Two familiar faces during television’s Golden Age have crossed the rainbow bridge. The first entry… we celebrate the one-year anniversary of his passing.

~  ~  ~

“`James Drury was an actor best remembered as the star of The Virginian. It ran on NBC for nine seasons.  His starring turn on the western guaranteed appearances on many small screen programs, including  Gunsmoke, Perry Mason, Rawhide, Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-InThe Rifleman, Wagon Train, Ironside, and Walker Texas Ranger.

“`Prior to his work on television, Drury co-starred in classic movies, such  The Blackboard Jungle, Forbidden Planet, Love Me or Leave Me, The Tender Trap, Love Me Tender, Pollyanna, and Ride the High Country. He was fortunate to work with Glenn Ford, James Cagney, Sidney Poitier, Doris Day, Walter Pidgeon, Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley, Joel McCrea, and Randolph Scott.

“`James Drury actually died on April 6, 2020 and was eighty-five.

          

JAMES DRURY  HERBERT ANDERSON  JAY NORTH  GLORIA HENRY

`

“`Gloria Henry was an actress best known as the mother of Dennis the Menace. Typecast as Alice Mitchell, her career was brief.

“`On the big screen, Henry was cast in Kill the UmpireBulldog Drummond Strikes Back, Johnny Allegro, Miss Grant Takes Richmond, and Rancho Notorious. On television, she guest-starred in  The Abbott and Costello Show, My Little Margie, HazelPerry Mason, The Life of Riley, Father Knows Best, Falcon Crest, and Dallas.

“`Gloria Henry turned nighty-eight on Saturday.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- April Showers…

April 4th, 2021

Manny P. here…

“`Turner Classic Movies is presenting their annual retrospective of classic cinema packaged as 31 Days of Oscar. The screenings began on April 1st and they run until May 1st. Each film shown was nominated for an Oscar. Art Kirsch and John Coleman, hosts of Celebrating Act 2, have asked me to chat about this yearly pilgrimage to movie nirvana.

“`By the way, each of the TCM hosts have selected five movies they are most looking forward to watching. Here are my five (pst):

It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (Monday, April 12th at 2:15p)

My Favorite Year (Sunday, April 18th at 9:30a)

Nebraska (Sunday, April 18th at 5p)

Ship of Fools (Sunday, April 25th at 9a)

Twelve Angry Men (Thursday, April 29th at 11:15p)

“`Enjoy!

Until next time>                               “never forget”