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Kyle Kersten was a true friend of TCM. One of the first and most active participants of the Message Boards, “Kyle in Hollywood” (aka, hlywdkjk) demonstrated a depth of knowledge and largesse of spirit that made him one of the most popular and respected voices in these forums. This thread is a living memorial to his life and love of movies, which remain with us still.

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Golden age: Roll call


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#1 TopBilled

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Posted Today, 01:34 PM

I saw her and her husband in a Monogram feature that starred burlesque queen, Ann Curio.

 

In that one, despite the low, low budget, Irene Ryan seemed impossibly funny.

 

Yes, the one with Corio is called SARONG GIRL. It occasionally airs on TCM.


  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#2 rayban

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Posted Today, 01:24 PM

 

screen-shot-2017-03-26-at-6-45-44-am.png

 

Her given name was Jessie Noblitt– Irene was her middle name, and Ryan was her husband’s name. She was born in Texas and before she was a teen, she was winning amateur contests for her singing. As she got older, she performed professionally on stage. And during her early days in vaudeville Irene Ryan honed her skills as a comic actress.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-51-29-pm.png

 

At the age of twenty she married Tim Ryan, and they had their own act. In some ways, their silly routines and banter resembled George Burns and Grace Allen. And like Burns & Allen, Tim & Irene started their screen careers doing comedy shorts. By the early 40s, they had become regular comic relief in a series of features at Monogram Pictures. Tim wrote all of their material, and he was used as a script doctor on a lot of Monogram’s releases, injecting humorous bits in the studio’s movies to make them crowd-pleasers with audiences.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-53-18-pm.png

 

Irene continued to perform professionally with Tim, even after they divorced. But by the late 40s, she had remarried began working independently at RKO, where she appeared in films like THE WOMAN ON THE BEACH and BLACKBEARD THE PIRATE. When she wasn’t on movie sets, she found jobs on radio, like many others did. And of course, she would transition to television where she would eventually become a household name.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-56-40-pm.png

 

In 1962 Irene landed her most popular role, as Granny Clampett on the long-running CBS sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies. She earned two Emmy nominations for her portrayal, and she crossed over to a few other rural comedies, where she also played Granny (as a guest star). Nine years later, when the Hillbillies show came to an end, she went to Broadway. Before her death, she was nominated for a Tony– at the time, she had been playing a supporting role in Bob Fosse’s ‘Pippin,’ where she sang and once again made audiences laugh.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-6-04-52-pm.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. o, my darling clementine (1943); republic; musical; roy acuff; 68 mins.
  2. sarong girl (1943); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 70 mins.
  3. melody parade (1943); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 73 mins.
  4. hot rhythm (1944); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 79 mins.
  5. san diego, i love you (1944); comedy; buster keaton; 83 mins.
  6. the diary of a chambermaid (1946); ua; paulette goddard; 86 mins.
  7. the woman on the beach (1947); rko; crime; joan bennett; 71 mins.
  8. half angel (1951); fox; comedy; loretta young; 77 mins.
  9. the wac from walla walla (1952); republic; judy canova; 83 mins.
  10. blackbeard, the priate (1952); rko; adventure; 99 mins.

 

I saw her and her husband in a Monogram feature that starred burlesque queen, Ann Curio.

 

In that one, despite the low, low budget, Irene Ryan seemed impossibly funny.


  • TopBilled likes this

"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#3 TopBilled

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Posted Today, 08:56 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-26-at-6-45-44-am.png

 

Her given name was Jessie Noblitt– Irene was her middle name, and Ryan was her husband’s name. She was born in Texas and before she was a teen, she was winning amateur contests for her singing. As she got older, she performed professionally on stage. And during her early days in vaudeville Irene Ryan honed her skills as a comic actress.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-51-29-pm.png

 

At the age of twenty she married Tim Ryan, and they had their own act. In some ways, their silly routines and banter resembled George Burns and Grace Allen. And like Burns & Allen, Tim & Irene started their screen careers doing comedy shorts. By the early 40s, they had become regular comic relief in a series of features at Monogram Pictures. Tim wrote all of their material, and he was used as a script doctor on a lot of Monogram’s releases, injecting humorous bits in the studio’s movies to make them crowd-pleasers with audiences.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-53-18-pm.png

 

Irene continued to perform professionally with Tim, even after they divorced. But by the late 40s, she had remarried began working independently at RKO, where she appeared in films like THE WOMAN ON THE BEACH and BLACKBEARD THE PIRATE. When she wasn’t on movie sets, she found jobs on radio, like many others did. And of course, she would transition to television where she would eventually become a household name.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-5-56-40-pm.png

 

In 1962 Irene landed her most popular role, as Granny Clampett on the long-running CBS sitcom The Beverly Hillbillies. She earned two Emmy nominations for her portrayal, and she crossed over to a few other rural comedies, where she also played Granny (as a guest star). Nine years later, when the Hillbillies show came to an end, she went to Broadway. Before her death, she was nominated for a Tony– at the time, she had been playing a supporting role in Bob Fosse’s ‘Pippin,’ where she sang and once again made audiences laugh.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-18-at-6-04-52-pm.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. o, my darling clementine (1943); republic; musical; roy acuff; 68 mins.
  2. sarong girl (1943); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 70 mins.
  3. melody parade (1943); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 73 mins.
  4. hot rhythm (1944); monogram; musical comedy; tim ryan; 79 mins.
  5. san diego, i love you (1944); comedy; buster keaton; 83 mins.
  6. the diary of a chambermaid (1946); ua; paulette goddard; 86 mins.
  7. the woman on the beach (1947); rko; crime; joan bennett; 71 mins.
  8. half angel (1951); fox; comedy; loretta young; 77 mins.
  9. the wac from walla walla (1952); republic; judy canova; 83 mins.
  10. blackbeard, the priate (1952); rko; adventure; 99 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#4 TopBilled

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Posted Yesterday, 09:37 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-25-at-7-06-44-am.png

 

William Frawley and his brother were entertainers who came from a family that disapproved of show business. While his brother gave up entertaining and went back home, Bill stayed on the road. He moved around a lot in the early days, taking jobs as a singer and as a comedian. Eventually he made his way to the east coast where he found more legitimate stage work.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-49-01-pm.pn

 

He also found opportunities to make silent films. However, he was not too interested in a cinematic career in those days, and he continued to focus on his musical comedy routines. He married, and his wife joined him in the act; this continued until their divorce. When sound films came in, Bill had the chance to appear on screen again, and he did a few short films. This led to his being offered a seven-year contract with Paramount in 1933.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-48-48-pm.pn

 

At Paramount he became one of the studio’s go-to character actors. He was utilized in practically every genre, working with the studio’s top directors and stars. One of the stars he worked with on the Paramount lot in the 30s was Fred MacMurray. They appeared together in the comedy THE PRINCESS COMES ACROSS and in the action flick CAR 99. At the time they had no idea they would become television costars 25 years later. But a friendship was formed, and of course, it was a lasting one.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-1-23-00-pm.png

 

Bill also became friends with Lucille Ball when she was under contract at MGM in the mid-40s. Both of them appeared in the Technicolor musical ZIEGFELD’S FOLLIES, though they were featured in separate sequences. In the early 50s, Bill’s movie career was in decline. By that point he had done over 100 screen roles, including a well-regarded turn in the holiday classic MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET, as well as Chaplin’s MONSIEUR VERDOUX. Realizing he needed to turn to television to stay employed, he learned that Lucy and her husband Desi were looking for a dependable actor to play the role of a tough but lovable landlord on their new sitcom.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-49-24-pm.pn

 

Of course, this led to Bill’s role as Fred Mertz on I Love Lucy. The show ran for six seasons (in the half-hour version), plus there were three additional seasons of specials (in a one-hour format). He was nominated several times for an Emmy for his performances. In 1960 he signed on to play the cook and all around caregiver Bub on MacMurray’s sitcom My Three Sons. It had a different production model than the Ball-Arnaz programs, but it was a hit and Bill had a lot of fun doing it.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-53-23-pm.pn

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. the princess comes across (1937); paramount; comedy; fred macmurray; 76 mins.
  2. something to sing about (1937); grand national; musical; james cagney; 93 mins.
  3. mad about music (1938); universal; musical; deanna durbin; 100 mins.
  4. st. louis blues (1939); paramount; musical; dorothy lamour; 92 mins.
  5. the adventures of huckleberry finn (1939); mgm; adventure; mickey rooney; 92 mins.
  6. the bride came c.o.d. (1941); warner brothers; comedy; james cagney; 92 mins.
  7. ziegfeld follies (1946); mgm; musical; fanny brice; 110 mins.
  8. monsieur verdoux (1947); ua; crime; charlie chaplin; 124 mins.
  9. miracle on 34th street (1947); fox; fantasy; maureen o’hara; 96 mins.
  10. kill the umpire (1950); columbia; comedy; william bendix; 78 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#5 TopBilled

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 01:31 PM

She was terrific in so many of her early films, like "The Girl In The Red Velvet Swing" and "Land of the Pharaohs".

 

TURN THE KEY SOFTLY. My absolute favorite of hers. She's so great in it.


  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#6 rayban

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 01:00 PM

 

screen-shot-2017-03-24-at-9-39-20-am.png

 

Joan Collins was destined to be a star. Her mother worked in a nightclub and taught dancing, her father was an agent (who represented many important British celebrities), and of course her sister was a writer. Joan was focused on screen success, and she attained it by a relatively young age. At 17, she was signed to the Rank Organisation. After a short time paying her dues in small roles, she was given a lead in TURN THE KEY SOFTLY, and of course it opened the door to more important films.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-16-29-am.png

 

Joan’s roles quickly typecast her. But it was a type she was able to do with remarkable ease and believability. In TURN THE KEY, she played a young prostitute returning from a stint in jail, trying to re-assimilate into society with two other female parolees. Rank followed this hit by putting Joan into other top-drawer productions in a variety of genres. It wasn’t long before Howard Hawks noticed and cast her in his big scale production LAND OF THE PHARAOHS. Soon after this executives at 20th Century Fox decided to buy her contract from Rank.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-32-18-am.png

 

In the mid-to-late-50s, Joan worked in Hollywood, and she appeared in several important ‘A’ pictures for Fox. She teamed up with Robert Wagner in STOPOVER TOKYO; hung around with Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward in RALLY ‘ROUND THE FLAG, BOYS!; costarred with Rod Steiger and assorted other crooks in SEVEN THIEVES; and she worked with Gregory Peck in THE BRAVADOS. Most of these did well with audience and critics.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-21-43-am1.pn

 

Also, she was loaned out to MGM for its remake of THE WOMEN (known as THE OPPOSITE SEX). After Joan’s contract ended with Fox in 1960, she costarred with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope in the last ROAD picture at United Artists, then returned to her native Britain.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-23-18-am1.pn

 

In England during the 60s and 70s, Joan focused on marriage and motherhood. In addition to these responsibilities, she took roles in British horror films. Plus there were appearances in several cult TV series, like the original Star Trek; Space: 1999; The Persuaders!; and Mission: Impossible. But by the mid-70s, her career was stalling and she tried to reinvent herself by playing the lead in two steamy adaptations of her sister’s bestselling books. It wouldn’t be until 1981, though, when Joan would truly reinvent herself on Aaron Spelling’s hit series Dynasty.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-27-30-am.png

 

The part of Alexis, the show's scheming ex-wife, had been intended for Sophia Loren. But when salary issues could not be resolved, Spelling decided Joan might be the perfect substitute for the role– and she was. She remained front and center until Dynasty went off the air eight years later.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-36-04-am.png

 

In the meantime, she became lifelong friends with many of her costars on the program and was involved in a reunion movie later on. Besides on-going film and television appearances, she’s taken a page from her sister’s book and published several of her own novels. Joan also devotes herself to charity work and as a result of those tireless efforts, she has been made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth II. Unlike Alexis, Joan has a prayer of getting into heaven.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-31-04-am.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. i believe in you (1952); general film; drama; celia johnson; 95 mins.
  2. turn the key softly (1953); general film; drama; yvonne mitchell; 81 mins.
  3. land of the pharaohs (1955); warners; drama; jack hawkins; 106 mins.
  4. the virgin queen (1955); fox; historical drama; bette davis; 92 mins.
  5. the girl in the red velvet swing (1955); fox; romance drama; ray milland; 109 mins.
  6. the opposite sex (1956); mgm; musical; june allyson; 117 mins.
  7. sea wife (1957); fox; drama; richard burton; 82 mins.
  8. the bravados (1958); fox; western; gregory peck; 98 mins.
  9. rally round the flag, boys! (1958); fox; comedy; paul newman; 106 mins.
  10. seven thieves (1960); fox; crime; rod steiger; 102 mins.

 

She was terrific in so many of her early films, like "The Girl In The Red Velvet Swing" and "Land of the Pharaohs".


  • TopBilled likes this

"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#7 TopBilled

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Posted 24 March 2017 - 11:52 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-24-at-9-39-20-am.png

 

Joan Collins was destined to be a star. Her mother worked in a nightclub and taught dancing, her father was an agent (who represented many important British celebrities), and of course her sister was a writer. Joan was focused on screen success, and she attained it by a relatively young age. At 17, she was signed to the Rank Organisation. After a short time paying her dues in small roles, she was given a lead in TURN THE KEY SOFTLY, and of course it opened the door to more important films.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-16-29-am.png

 

Joan’s roles quickly typecast her. But it was a type she was able to do with remarkable ease and believability. In TURN THE KEY, she played a young prostitute returning from a stint in jail, trying to re-assimilate into society with two other female parolees. Rank followed this hit by putting Joan into other top-drawer productions in a variety of genres. It wasn’t long before Howard Hawks noticed and cast her in his big scale production LAND OF THE PHARAOHS. Soon after this executives at 20th Century Fox decided to buy her contract from Rank.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-32-18-am.png

 

In the mid-to-late-50s, Joan worked in Hollywood, and she appeared in several important ‘A’ pictures for Fox. She teamed up with Robert Wagner in STOPOVER TOKYO; hung around with Paul Newman & Joanne Woodward in RALLY ‘ROUND THE FLAG, BOYS!; costarred with Rod Steiger and assorted other crooks in SEVEN THIEVES; and she worked with Gregory Peck in THE BRAVADOS. Most of these did well with audience and critics.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-21-43-am1.pn

 

Also, she was loaned out to MGM for its remake of THE WOMEN (known as THE OPPOSITE SEX). After Joan’s contract ended with Fox in 1960, she costarred with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope in the last ROAD picture at United Artists, then returned to her native Britain.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-23-18-am1.pn

 

In England during the 60s and 70s, Joan focused on marriage and motherhood. In addition to these responsibilities, she took roles in British horror films. Plus there were appearances in several cult TV series, like the original Star Trek; Space: 1999; The Persuaders!; and Mission: Impossible. But by the mid-70s, her career was stalling and she tried to reinvent herself by playing the lead in two steamy adaptations of her sister’s bestselling books. It wouldn’t be until 1981, though, when Joan would truly reinvent herself on Aaron Spelling’s hit series Dynasty.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-27-30-am.png

 

The part of Alexis, the show's scheming ex-wife, had been intended for Sophia Loren. But when salary issues could not be resolved, Spelling decided Joan might be the perfect substitute for the role– and she was. She remained front and center until Dynasty went off the air eight years later.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-36-04-am.png

 

In the meantime, she became lifelong friends with many of her costars on the program and was involved in a reunion movie later on. Besides on-going film and television appearances, she’s taken a page from her sister’s book and published several of her own novels. Joan also devotes herself to charity work and as a result of those tireless efforts, she has been made a Dame by Queen Elizabeth II. Unlike Alexis, Joan has a prayer of getting into heaven.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-31-04-am.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. i believe in you (1952); general film; drama; celia johnson; 95 mins.
  2. turn the key softly (1953); general film; drama; yvonne mitchell; 81 mins.
  3. land of the pharaohs (1955); warners; drama; jack hawkins; 106 mins.
  4. the virgin queen (1955); fox; historical drama; bette davis; 92 mins.
  5. the girl in the red velvet swing (1955); fox; romance drama; ray milland; 109 mins.
  6. the opposite sex (1956); mgm; musical; june allyson; 117 mins.
  7. sea wife (1957); fox; drama; richard burton; 82 mins.
  8. the bravados (1958); fox; western; gregory peck; 98 mins.
  9. rally round the flag, boys! (1958); fox; comedy; paul newman; 106 mins.
  10. seven thieves (1960); fox; crime; rod steiger; 102 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#8 rayban

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Posted 23 March 2017 - 11:07 AM

 

screen-shot-2017-03-23-at-6-50-37-am.png

 

The title of Peter Falk’s autobiography is ‘Just One More Thing: Stories from My Life.’ It refers to the catchphrase used by the popular detective character Columbo, which he played for decades on television. But Peter was more than that rumpled crime solver– he was an actor, an artist, and an observer of human nature. He brought all those sensibilities to Detective Columbo, and to the countless other characters he created on stage and on screen.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-20-11-pm.pn

 

In the early days he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do with his life, so Peter joined the Merchant Marines. Afterward he returned home and earned two degrees in college. He took a job in Connecticut, and decided he would spend the evenings learning how to act with a group of professionals. During this period (the mid-50s) he developed his performance skills, and soon he was appearing on television programs and in low-budget films. He didn’t make much of an impact until he turned up as a gangster in Fox’s crime drama MURDER, INC. His idiosyncratic work as an amusing but vicious killer earned him praise from critics and an Oscar nomination.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-22-28-pm2.p

 

Peter followed this up by playing a more comical gangster in Frank Capra’s POCKETFUL OF MIRACLES, for which he earned another Oscar nomination. Peter was also nominated for an Emmy during the same year. He would keep busy throughout the 60s doing guest roles on a variety of programs, and at one point, he had a short-lived series of his own. His success as Columbo didn’t occur until near the end of the decade, when Universal hired him to play the character in a telefilm. It was a huge hit, and a regular series of Columbo TV movies aired until 1978. One of these featured Peter’s good friend John Cassavetes, with whom he worked on several motion pictures.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-23-at-6-58-23-am1.pn

 

The Columbo franchise went on a lengthy hiatus until the late 80s. During the time in between the two runs of the show, Peter took various film roles. He appeared in a spoof of sleuthing, called THE CHEAP DETECTIVE. He also had what is probably his best movie role, alongside Alan Arkin, in the frenetic comedy THE IN-LAWS.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-25-18-pm.pn

 

A few years later Peter was the narrator in THE PRINCESS BRIDE, directed by Rob Reiner. After Peter’s death in 2011, Rob described him as a truly unique performer– and of course, he was.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-27-44-pm.pn

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. murder, inc. (1960); fox; crime; stuart whitman; 103 mins.
  2. pocketful of miracles (1961); ua; crime comedy; glenn ford; 136 mins.
  3. robin and the 7 hoods (1964); warner brothers; musical; frank sinatra; 124 mins.
  4. the great race (1965); warner brothers; comedy; jack lemmon; 160 mins.
  5. penelope (1966); mgm; comedy; natalie wood; 98 mins.
  6. castle keep (1969); columbia; war; burt lancaster; 107 mins.
  7. husbands (1970); columbia; drama; ben gazzara; 138 mins.
  8. murder by death (1976); columbia; comedy; david niven; 94 mins.
  9. the cheap detective (1978); columbia; comedy; ann-margret; 92 mins.
  10. the in-laws (1979); warner brothers; comedy; alan arkin; 103 mins.

 

He was also "just perfect" as Gena Rowlands' husband in "A Woman Under The Influence".


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"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#9 TopBilled

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Posted 23 March 2017 - 09:01 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-23-at-6-50-37-am.png

 

The title of Peter Falk’s autobiography is ‘Just One More Thing: Stories from My Life.’ It refers to the catchphrase used by the popular detective character Columbo, which he played for decades on television. But Peter was more than that rumpled crime solver– he was an actor, an artist, and an observer of human nature. He brought all those sensibilities to Detective Columbo, and to the countless other characters he created on stage and on screen.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-20-11-pm.pn

 

In the early days he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do with his life, so Peter joined the Merchant Marines. Afterward he returned home and earned two degrees in college. He took a job in Connecticut, and decided he would spend the evenings learning how to act with a group of professionals. During this period (the mid-50s) he developed his performance skills, and soon he was appearing on television programs and in low-budget films. He didn’t make much of an impact until he turned up as a gangster in Fox’s crime drama MURDER, INC. His idiosyncratic work as an amusing but vicious killer earned him praise from critics and an Oscar nomination.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-22-28-pm2.p

 

Peter followed this up by playing a more comical gangster in Frank Capra’s POCKETFUL OF MIRACLES, for which he earned another Oscar nomination. Peter was also nominated for an Emmy during the same year. He would keep busy throughout the 60s doing guest roles on a variety of programs, and at one point, he had a short-lived series of his own. His success as Columbo didn’t occur until near the end of the decade, when Universal hired him to play the character in a telefilm. It was a huge hit, and a regular series of Columbo TV movies aired until 1978. One of these featured Peter’s good friend John Cassavetes, with whom he worked on several motion pictures.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-23-at-6-58-23-am1.pn

 

The Columbo franchise went on a lengthy hiatus until the late 80s. During the time in between the two runs of the show, Peter took various film roles. He appeared in a spoof of sleuthing, called THE CHEAP DETECTIVE. He also had what is probably his best movie role, alongside Alan Arkin, in the frenetic comedy THE IN-LAWS.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-25-18-pm.pn

 

A few years later Peter was the narrator in THE PRINCESS BRIDE, directed by Rob Reiner. After Peter’s death in 2011, Rob described him as a truly unique performer– and of course, he was.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-12-27-44-pm.pn

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. murder, inc. (1960); fox; crime; stuart whitman; 103 mins.
  2. pocketful of miracles (1961); ua; crime comedy; glenn ford; 136 mins.
  3. robin and the 7 hoods (1964); warner brothers; musical; frank sinatra; 124 mins.
  4. the great race (1965); warner brothers; comedy; jack lemmon; 160 mins.
  5. penelope (1966); mgm; comedy; natalie wood; 98 mins.
  6. castle keep (1969); columbia; war; burt lancaster; 107 mins.
  7. husbands (1970); columbia; drama; ben gazzara; 138 mins.
  8. murder by death (1976); columbia; comedy; david niven; 94 mins.
  9. the cheap detective (1978); columbia; comedy; ann-margret; 92 mins.
  10. the in-laws (1979); warner brothers; comedy; alan arkin; 103 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#10 TopBilled

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 11:17 AM

She was interesting in "The Picture of Dorian Gray" and "Green Dolphin Street".

 

I think she struggled with the accent she had to use in DORIAN GRAY and felt she was miscast. GREEN DOLPHIN STREET is a good film but it's a picture that caused her to leave MGM, because I don't think she wanted to play second fiddle to Lana Turner. She considered herself a star in her own right after IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE, and justifiably so.


  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#11 rayban

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 11:16 AM

 

screen-shot-2017-03-22-at-8-59-00-am.png

 

Donna Reed was born Donna Mullenger, and she grew up an Iowa farm girl. She wanted to become a teacher and on the advice of a relative, she went to college in Los Angeles. While working on her degree, she was spotted by MGM talent scouts. Donna was signed to a motion picture contract with the studio, but because America was about to enter the war, and there was a bias against Germans, her last name was changed to Reed.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-12-56-am.jp

 

She had a lead role in a remake of PUBLIC HERO NO. 1, which was titled THE GET-AWAY. It was a hit, but different from the kinds of wholesome pictures the studio would start to place her in. She soon worked with Mickey Rooney in an Andy Hardy picture; played little Bobby Blake’s mom in the family comedy MOKEY; and she had a role in the western comedy GENTLE ANNIE. During this time, her image became popular with American service personnel.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-13-27-am.jp

 

As a result of her popularity with soldiers, MGM decided to cast Donna as Robert Walker’s girlfriend in the military satire SEE HERE, PRIVATE HARGROVE. There was also an assignment in John Ford’s war drama THEY WERE EXPENDABLE, where she played opposite fellow Iowa native John Wayne. Donna and Duke would work together again in the 50s, in the college football comedy-drama TROUBLE ALONG THE WAY. From this point forward Donna was generally typecast as the girl-next-door.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-15-15-am.jp

 

As a result of her screen image, RKO requested to use her for Frank Capra’s postwar drama IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE. It’s probably Donna’s most well-known film, with her cast as James Stewart’s small town sweetheart. After the success of this picture, Donna returned to Metro but was dissatisfied with subsequent roles and asked to be let out of her contract. She did two films at Paramount with Alan Ladd, then signed with Columbia. And at Columbia, she successfully played against type in FROM HERE TO ETERNITY, earning an Oscar.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-15-36-am.jp

 

By the late 50s, Donna’s movie career was in decline. She and her producer husband sought to re-establish her on television. For eight years, she starred in The Donna Reed Show, playing (what else) an all-American suburban mom. After the sitcom left the airwaves in 1966, Donna went into semi-retirement. But in the mid-80s, producers Leonard Goldberg and Aaron Spelling lured her back to television for a movie of the week and a special two-part episode of The Love Boat. Then when Barbara Bel Geddes temporarily vacated her role on the primetime sudser Dallas, producers of that program enticed Donna to step in for a year to play Miss Ellie.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-17-22-am.jp

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. the get-away (1941); mgm; crime; robert sterling; 89 mins.
  2. the courtship of andy hardy (1942); mgm; comedy; mickey rooney; 95 mins.
  3. mokey (1942); mgm; comedy; bobby blake; 88 mins.
  4. see here, private hargrove (1945); mgm; comedy; robert walker; 101 mins.
  5. they were expendable (1945); mgm; war; john wayne; 135 mins.
  6. it’s a wonderful life (1946); rko; comedy drama; james stewart; 130 mins.
  7. beyond glory (1948); paramount; drama; alan ladd; 82 mins.
  8. trouble along the way (1953); warners; comedy drama; john wayne; 110 mins.
  9. from here to eternity (1953); columbia; war; montgomery clift; 118 mins.
  10. backlash (1956); universal; western; richard widmark; 84 mins.

 

She was interesting in "The Picture of Dorian Gray" and "Green Dolphin Street".


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"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#12 TopBilled

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Posted 22 March 2017 - 11:09 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-22-at-8-59-00-am.png

 

Donna Reed was born Donna Mullenger, and she grew up an Iowa farm girl. She wanted to become a teacher and on the advice of a relative, she went to college in Los Angeles. While working on her degree, she was spotted by MGM talent scouts. Donna was signed to a motion picture contract with the studio, but because America was about to enter the war, and there was a bias against Germans, her last name was changed to Reed.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-12-56-am.jp

 

She had a lead role in a remake of PUBLIC HERO NO. 1, which was titled THE GET-AWAY. It was a hit, but different from the kinds of wholesome pictures the studio would start to place her in. She soon worked with Mickey Rooney in an Andy Hardy picture; played little Bobby Blake’s mom in the family comedy MOKEY; and she had a role in the western comedy GENTLE ANNIE. During this time, her image became popular with American service personnel.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-13-27-am.jp

 

As a result of her popularity with soldiers, MGM decided to cast Donna as Robert Walker’s girlfriend in the military satire SEE HERE, PRIVATE HARGROVE. There was also an assignment in John Ford’s war drama THEY WERE EXPENDABLE, where she played opposite fellow Iowa native John Wayne. Donna and Duke would work together again in the 50s, in the college football comedy-drama TROUBLE ALONG THE WAY. From this point forward Donna was generally typecast as the girl-next-door.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-15-15-am.jp

 

As a result of her screen image, RKO requested to use her for Frank Capra’s postwar drama IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE. It’s probably Donna’s most well-known film, with her cast as James Stewart’s small town sweetheart. After the success of this picture, Donna returned to Metro but was dissatisfied with subsequent roles and asked to be let out of her contract. She did two films at Paramount with Alan Ladd, then signed with Columbia. And at Columbia, she successfully played against type in FROM HERE TO ETERNITY, earning an Oscar.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-15-36-am.jp

 

By the late 50s, Donna’s movie career was in decline. She and her producer husband sought to re-establish her on television. For eight years, she starred in The Donna Reed Show, playing (what else) an all-American suburban mom. After the sitcom left the airwaves in 1966, Donna went into semi-retirement. But in the mid-80s, producers Leonard Goldberg and Aaron Spelling lured her back to television for a movie of the week and a special two-part episode of The Love Boat. Then when Barbara Bel Geddes temporarily vacated her role on the primetime sudser Dallas, producers of that program enticed Donna to step in for a year to play Miss Ellie.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-10-17-22-am.jp

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. the get-away (1941); mgm; crime; robert sterling; 89 mins.
  2. the courtship of andy hardy (1942); mgm; comedy; mickey rooney; 95 mins.
  3. mokey (1942); mgm; comedy; bobby blake; 88 mins.
  4. see here, private hargrove (1945); mgm; comedy; robert walker; 101 mins.
  5. they were expendable (1945); mgm; war; john wayne; 135 mins.
  6. it’s a wonderful life (1946); rko; comedy drama; james stewart; 130 mins.
  7. beyond glory (1948); paramount; drama; alan ladd; 82 mins.
  8. trouble along the way (1953); warners; comedy drama; john wayne; 110 mins.
  9. from here to eternity (1953); columbia; war; montgomery clift; 118 mins.
  10. backlash (1956); universal; western; richard widmark; 84 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#13 rayban

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Posted 21 March 2017 - 10:35 AM

 

screen-shot-2017-03-20-at-6-31-07-am.png

 

Kieron Moore grew up in a home that fostered an appreciation for literature and the arts. His father was a linguist, a sister became a radio performer, and a brother was a music director. Kieron had wanted to be a doctor but dropped his studies in medicine when an opportunity came along to join Ireland’s national theater. He quickly established himself, and at age 19 was playing Heathcliff in a version of ‘Wuthering Heights.’

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-59-24-am.png

 

He took his skills to London and after a successful run in another stage production, he was signed to a movie contract. The bosses at the studio that signed him felt he could convincingly play romantic leads as well as villains. After the war, Kieron made his movie debut, and during one of the first pictures he did, he fell in love with a female costar (Barbara White) and they married. It was a union that would last sixty years until Kieron’s death. Back on screen he had an ill-fated romance with Vivien Leigh in a remake of ANNA KARENINA, where he played Count Vronsky.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-55-52-am.png

 

Hollywood production companies were taking notice of Kieron, and they requested his services in a few American films. He costarred alongside Burt Lancaster in a Columbia western called TEN TALL MEN; and he worked with Gregory Peck in Fox’s biblical epic DAVID AND BATHSHEBA. Peck became a lifelong friend, and they would reunite on screen in the 60s for ARABESQUE. After his experiences in Hollywood, Kieron returned to London where he continued to appear in top-drawer films, usually as the lead.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-54-33-am.png

 

Occasionally Kieron branched out and attempted other kinds of roles. He tried his hand at a few Hammer horror films, and in Ronald Neame’s heist drama THE LEAGUE OF GENTLEMEN he played a gay crook who also happened to be a fascist. After this he did some war films and westerns, plus there were appearances on British television programs. But in 1974, Kieron quit acting and turned his efforts towards humanitarian causes. He did some voice-over work on documentaries about the plight of people in third world countries.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-54-10-am.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. mine own executioner (1947); british lion; drama; barbara white; 108 mins.
  2. anna karenina (1948); london films; drama; vivien leigh; 139 mins.
  3. the naked heart (1950); british lion; drama; michele morgan; 100 mins.
  4. david and bathsheba (1951); fox; drama; gregory peck; 116 mins.
  5. ten tall men (1951); columbia; western; burt lancaster; 97 mins.
  6. conflict of wings (1954); british lion; drama; john gregson; 84 mins.
  7. the blue peter (1955); british lion; adventure; sarah lawson; 93 mins.
  8. the steel bayonet (1957); hammer; war; leo genn; 87 mins.
  9. darby o’gill and the little people (1959); disney; fantasy; sean connery; 93 mins.
  10. the league of gentlemen (1960); british lion; crime; jack hawkins; 116 mins.

 

His Count Vronsky in "Anna Karenina" was an awesome performance.


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"I was born the day she kissed me.  I died the day she left me.  I lived a few weeks while she loved me." - Humphrey Bogart in "In A Lonely Place".


#14 TopBilled

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Posted 21 March 2017 - 09:15 AM

Can you guess the ones I will be spotlighting..?

 

Names on television

 

screen-shot-2017-02-25-at-8-07-37-pm.png

 

Wednesday March 22-- #493: Donna Stone and Ellie Ewing.

Thursday March 23-- #494: Columbo.

Friday March 24-- #495: Alexis Carrington Colby.

Saturday March 25-- #496: Fred Mertz.

Sunday March 26-- #497: Granny Clampett.

Monday March 27-- #498: Ralph Kramden.

Tuesday March 28-- #499: Jeannie Nelson.

 


  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#15 TopBilled

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Posted 20 March 2017 - 08:41 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-20-at-6-31-07-am.png

 

Kieron Moore grew up in a home that fostered an appreciation for literature and the arts. His father was a linguist, a sister became a radio performer, and a brother was a music director. Kieron had wanted to be a doctor but dropped his studies in medicine when an opportunity came along to join Ireland’s national theater. He quickly established himself, and at age 19 was playing Heathcliff in a version of ‘Wuthering Heights.’

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-59-24-am.png

 

He took his skills to London and after a successful run in another stage production, he was signed to a movie contract. The bosses at the studio that signed him felt he could convincingly play romantic leads as well as villains. After the war, Kieron made his movie debut, and during one of the first pictures he did, he fell in love with a female costar (Barbara White) and they married. It was a union that would last sixty years until Kieron’s death. Back on screen he had an ill-fated romance with Vivien Leigh in a remake of ANNA KARENINA, where he played Count Vronsky.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-55-52-am.png

 

Hollywood production companies were taking notice of Kieron, and they requested his services in a few American films. He costarred alongside Burt Lancaster in a Columbia western called TEN TALL MEN; and he worked with Gregory Peck in Fox’s biblical epic DAVID AND BATHSHEBA. Peck became a lifelong friend, and they would reunite on screen in the 60s for ARABESQUE. After his experiences in Hollywood, Kieron returned to London where he continued to appear in top-drawer films, usually as the lead.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-54-33-am.png

 

Occasionally Kieron branched out and attempted other kinds of roles. He tried his hand at a few Hammer horror films, and in Ronald Neame’s heist drama THE LEAGUE OF GENTLEMEN he played a gay crook who also happened to be a fascist. After this he did some war films and westerns, plus there were appearances on British television programs. But in 1974, Kieron quit acting and turned his efforts towards humanitarian causes. He did some voice-over work on documentaries about the plight of people in third world countries.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-54-10-am.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. mine own executioner (1947); british lion; drama; barbara white; 108 mins.
  2. anna karenina (1948); london films; drama; vivien leigh; 139 mins.
  3. the naked heart (1950); british lion; drama; michele morgan; 100 mins.
  4. david and bathsheba (1951); fox; drama; gregory peck; 116 mins.
  5. ten tall men (1951); columbia; western; burt lancaster; 97 mins.
  6. conflict of wings (1954); british lion; drama; john gregson; 84 mins.
  7. the blue peter (1955); british lion; adventure; sarah lawson; 93 mins.
  8. the steel bayonet (1957); hammer; war; leo genn; 87 mins.
  9. darby o’gill and the little people (1959); disney; fantasy; sean connery; 93 mins.
  10. the league of gentlemen (1960); british lion; crime; jack hawkins; 116 mins.

  • rayban likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#16 TopBilled

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Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:52 AM

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-8-39-41-am.png

 

Sara Allgood lost her father when she was sixteen. This required Sara to quit school and take a job to help support the family. Some of her younger siblings were placed in an orphanage. She stayed in touch with one of them, a sister named Mary, and when they were a bit older they pursued careers in the Irish theater. Both eventually became quite successful as actresses.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-6-47-33-am.png

 

For quite a few years Sara and Maire (Mary’s stage name) worked for a national theater group in Dublin. Like many of their contemporaries, they eventually relocated to London to find other stage work and opportunities in the British motion picture industry. During the 1930s, the Allgood sisters found roles in the cinema, and in addition to separate ventures, they appeared in four films together. Sara starred in Alfred Hitchcock’s early sound film JUNO AND THE PAYCOCK, and she worked for Hitch in other movies. She continued to find steady employment, usually typecast in servant roles that made good use of her Irish accent. One particularly delightful performance had her appearing opposite Rex Harrison and Vivien Leigh in the political satire STORM IN A TEACUP.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-19-at-9-18-23-am1.jp

 

By the end of the decade Sara was seeking the chance to go to Hollywood. A production she did had gone to Broadway and a short time later she toured America with the show. She eventually made her way to California and landed a part in John Ford’s HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY. It led to an Oscar nomination and a long-term contract with 20th Century Fox. For the next several years, Sara played all kinds of character parts at the studio. She was Carole Landis’ tough-talking aunt who owned a baseball team in IT HAPPENED IN FLATBLUSH; she had a soft spot for Ida Lupino’s father in LIFE BEGINS AT EIGHT-THIRTY; and she played Bessie in JANE EYRE.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-7-08-07-am.png

 

In the mid-40 she began to freelance. Sara turned in outstanding performances in THE STRANGE AFFAIR OF UNCLE HARRY (as a housekeeper); and in THE SPIRAL STAIRCASE (as Ethel Barrymore’s abused nurse). During this time she became a U.S. citizen and continued to make movies until her passing in 1950. Her last screen appearance occurred in Fox’s original version of CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN.

 

screen-shot-2017-03-10-at-6-47-50-am.png

09d8a-screen2bshot2b2016-12-192bat2b2-00

  1. juno and the paycock (1930); wardour; drama; barry fitzgerald; 85 mins.
  2. irish hearts (1934); mgm; drama; lester matthews; 70 mins.
  3. storm in a teacup (1937); london films; comedy; rex harrison; 87 mins.
  4. how green was my valley (1940); fox; drama; maureen o’hara; 118 mins.
  5. dr. jekyll and mr. hyde (1941); mgm; horror; spencer tracy; 115 mins.
  6. it happened in flatbush (1942); fox; comedy; carole landis; 80 mins.
  7. life begins at eight-thirty (1942); fox; comedy drama; monty woolley; 85 mins.
  8. the strange affair of uncle harry (1945); universal; drama; george sanders; 80 mins.
  9. the spiral staircase (1946); rko; crime; ethel barrymore; 83 mins.
  10. cheaper by the dozen (1950); fox; comedy; clifton webb; 85 mins.

  • yanceycravat likes this

"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#17 TopBilled

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Posted 18 March 2017 - 04:31 PM

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Dan O’Herlihy usually played supporting roles in films. But every so often, there was a lead in a good picture; and for one of those, he received an Oscar nomination. It was 1954’s independently produced version of ROBINSON CRUSOE. Originally the financial backers of the film wanted Orson Welles to play the title character, but director Luis Bunuel insisted on hiring Dan O’Herlihy. This was after he had seen the Irish-born actor’s work in Welles’ recent adaptation of MACBETH.

 

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Dan was trained in the theater, and like other prominent actors who honed their craft during those years in Dublin, he apprenticed under Sean O’Casey. After appearing in one of the dramatist’s plays, Dan quickly caught on with the public. Critics were enamored with his acting style, and more important roles came his way. Within a very short time he was in London, where he had a part in Carol Reed’s ODD MAN OUT and another role in THE HUNGRY HILL.

 

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A year later Dan  was working in Hollywood. It was a fast climb for him, but his talent sustained the rapid advancement of his career. In addition to the films with Welles and Bunuel, he had other successes in America. These included a film noir at Universal; a western for United Artists; and a war film at Fox. Many of these were supporting roles but he remained very much in demand for the types of characters in which he specialized. Typically he portrayed authority figures or men with a great deal of influence (and resilience).

 

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After his nomination for the Bunuel film, which was produced in Mexico, he still did not become an ‘A’ list star. Dan next appeared in THE VIRGIN QUEEN at Fox; as well as Warners’ HOME BEFORE DARK, where he was very effective as Jean Simmons’ philandering husband. In the meantime he would return to the stage and took jobs on television shows. His feature film appearances, though, would continue until the late 1990s. He played the role of ‘The Old Man’ in the ROBOCOP franchise. Dan was a survivor, just like Robinson Crusoe had been.

 

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  1. the hungry hill (1947); two cities; drama; margaret lockwood; 92 mins.
  2. macbeth (1948); republic; drama; orson welles; 107 mins.
  3. kidnapped (1948); monogram; drama; roddy mcdowall; 81 mins.
  4. soldiers three (1951); mgm; adventure; stewart granger; 92 mins.
  5. robinson crusoe (1954); independent; drama; jaime fernandez; 89 mins.
  6. that woman opposite (1957); british; crime; phyllis kirk; 85 mins.
  7. home before dark (1958); warners; drama; jean simmons; 136 mins.
  8. a terrible beauty (1960); ua; drama; robert mitchum; 90 mins.
  9. one foot in hell (1960); fox; western; alan ladd; 89 mins.
  10. the cabinet of caligari (1962); fox; horror; glynis johns; 105 mins.

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"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#18 TopBilled

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 02:20 PM

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Kathleen Ryan was considered one of the most beautiful women of Ireland in the 1940s. Before she decided to give acting a shot, she was a popular model for portraitists. She would pose for artists while she was attending college; and some of the paintings with her as a subject are in museums today. As she finished her schooling, she wed a young man who had been studying to be a doctor and they settled into married life.

 

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But after the war, Kathleen was given the opportunity to appear in motion pictures. It meant leaving her native Ireland and relocating to London (at least part-time). For her debut, she made a biographical drama with Stewart Granger. Then she was cast in what would be her most important role in Carol Reed’s classic crime film ODD MAN OUT. Kathleen became a bonafide star after it was released. She followed this with assignments in other British films, including one with Dirk Bogarde where she was billed first, as well as another with Fredric March.

 

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In 1950 she made her first Hollywood film– it was THE SOUND OF FURY, a prison break story with Frank Lovejoy and Richard Carlson. Around this time she had also worked for American director Edward Dmytryk in the neorealist drama GIVE US THIS DAY; though that picture was made in England because he was blacklisted at the time. She would make another Hollywood film in the mid-50s, when Douglas Sirk cast her in his historical drama CAPTAIN LIGHTFOOT, which was filmed on location in Ireland.

 

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Usually when Kathleen wasn’t working on movies, she returned to her home in Ireland where she lived with her husband. She only made one television program– it was an episode for Douglas Fairbanks Jr.’s British anthology series. He told a TV columnist he personally selected her to appear with him in a story about Ireland, because he wanted an authentic Irish actress who was beautiful, warm and sincere.

 

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  1. odd man out (1947); rank; crime; james mason; 116 mins.
  2. captain boycott (1947); individual; historical drama; stewart granger; 92 mins.
  3. esther waters (1948); general film; drama; dirk bogarde; 108 mins.
  4. christopher columbus (1949); universal; historical biopic; fredric march; 104 mins.
  5. give us this day (1949); eagle-lion; drama; sam wanamaker; 120 mins.
  6. prelude to fame (1950); universal; drama; guy rolfe; 78 mins.
  7. the sound of fury (1950); ua; crime; frank lovejoy; 92 mins.
  8. laxdale hall (1953); british pathe; romantic comedy; ronald squire; 77 mins.
  9. captain lightfoot (1955); universal; adventure; rock hudson; 92 mins.
  10. jacqueline (1956); rank; drama; john gregson; 89 mins.

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"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#19 TopBilled

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 07:57 AM

He also appeared with his brother Arthur Shields.  They co starred in John Ford's "The Long Voyage Home" and "The Quite Man" together....

 

Yes, Barry's brother Arthur was also a member of John Ford's stock company. 


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"You've had a few hours given back to you from life. A few hours in which to change your minds and your hearts. When you came into the grounds of this inn, you came into a place as it was a year ago today. You were in your own time, but the house and garden and Gwyneth and I are in the time of last year. The day the bomb hit. When you go away and walk up the road you will have spent a night in an inn. But if you look back from the crest of the hill, the halfway house will not be here...but if you remember, it will be as you remember a forgotten snatch of song. It will be a picture before your eyes. Gone before you realize it is there. Or an echo in the hidden places of your mind. But you have been here...and the world is what you make it." -- Mervyn Johns, THE HALFWAY HOUSE.


#20 fredbaetz

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Posted 17 March 2017 - 03:24 AM

 

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Barry Fitzgerald made motion picture history when he was nominated in two major acting categories for the same performance. It was for his work in Paramount’s hit film GOING MY WAY, in which he played an older priest whose ways of thinking are challenged by a younger colleague (Bing Crosby). Barry ended up receiving the award in the supporting category, while Bing was honored as the lead. Soon after, Academy rules changed preventing any performer from being nominated more than once for a single role.
 

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Because of his Oscar performance in GOING MY WAY, Barry became a household name. But it wasn’t always that way. He spent years in his native Ireland working as a civil service employee by day and acting on stage at night. He eventually became an esteemed member of Ireland’s national theater, and only then did he feel comfortable enough to quit his day job.
 

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In the late 1920s he went to London to explore opportunities there. He was cast in an early sound film directed by Alfred Hitchcock but other movie roles were not forthcoming. He continued to work in various stage productions, and finally in 1936, he was given the chance to go to Hollywood to appear in John Ford’s version of THE PLOUGH AND THE STARS, written by renowned Irish playwright Sean O’Casey– a man Barry had once lived with. After filming was completed, Ford used Barry again in another picture at Fox. And from this point forward Barry became an ‘unofficial’ member of the John Ford stock company.
 

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After signing a contract with Paramount, Barry began to find the kinds of roles he was born to play. He costarred in THE STORK CLUB with Betty Hutton; he worked with Barbara Stanwyck and Ray Milland in the robust Technicolor western CALIFORNIA; and he made several other romantic comedies with Bing Crosby. Barry’s career was at its peak, and when he wasn’t on movie sets, he relaxed by playing golf and enjoying his favorite ale.
 

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In the early 50s, he slowed down a bit, but there were a few other memorable turns. He costarred with Yvonne De Carlo in SILVER CITY; and his old boss John Ford hired him for a supporting role in Republic’s THE QUIET MAN, which took him back to Ireland for on-location shooting. In the mid-50s Barry did a bit of television– he had a notable role in a Christmas-themed episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents; and then he worked with Bette Davis and Ernest Borgnine in THE CATERED AFFAIR. By the later part of the decade, his health was in decline. The only logical thing for him to do was to go back to Ireland, and that is where he passed away.
 

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  1. the plough and the stars (1937); rko; drama; barbara stanwyck; 72 mins.
  2. bringing up baby (1938); rko; comedy; may robson; 102 mins.
  3. the long voyage home (1940); ua; drama; john wayne; 105 mins.
  4. going my way (1944); paramount; comedy drama; bing crosby; 126 mins.
  5. and then there were none (1945); fox; crime; walter huston; 97 mins.
  6. the stork club (1945); paramount; musical comedy; betty hutton; 98 mins.
  7. california (1947); paramount; western; barbara stanwyck; 97 mins.
  8. the naked city (1948); universal; crime; howard duff; 96 mins.
  9. the story of sea biscuit (1949); warners; drama; shirley temple; 98 mins.
  10. the quiet man (1952); republic; drama; john wayne; 129 mins.

 

He also appeared with his brother Arthur Shields.  They co starred in John Ford's "The Long Voyage Home" and "The Quite Man" together....


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