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How is a TCM Star of the Month selected?

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I thought it would be fun to ask the question-- how is a SOTM chosen by TCM's staff?

 

My guess is that several factors go into it:

 

1. Familiarity. Household names probably come first, and all the iconic images that can be used for a star of a certain magnitude.

 

2. Marketability. Will this selection stimulate sales of certain films and products that TCM sells?

 

3. Timeliness. Special 100th birthdays don't hurt (especially if the individual is still living).

 

4. Fan requests. A few years ago, a lot of people wanted to see Joel McCrea honored. Also, there was a groundswell of support for Mary Astor. Both were given the honor. 

 

P.S. It would be interesting if a TCM staff member reading this thread felt like commenting...

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I think a primary consideration is $$$.

 

I am thinking that TCM does a preliminary pick of a name/star and then they search their library. If they have to outsource films, then they probably need to see if they are within the budget.

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I think a primary consideration is $$$.

 

I am thinking that TCM does a preliminary pick of a name/star and then they search their library. If they have to outsource films, then they probably need to see if they are within the budget.

 

I agree that availability of films is a primary consideration.    This is why we see few 20th Century Fox under contract stars as SOTM.

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I agree that availability of films is a primary consideration.    This is why we see few 20th Century Fox under contract stars as SOTM.

Unless they had a shared contract with another studio/company-- or after their days at Fox, they freelanced at MGM, WB and RKO. 

 

One actor with a shared contract was Dana Andrews-- his services were split between Fox and Sam Goldwyn. Maybe the programmers don't feel he's a big enough "star"...though I'm sure his fans do.

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I think a case can be made for all of these. None have been featured as Star of the Month yet on TCM.

 

Alphabetically:

Dana Andrews

Joan Bennett

Ernest Borgnine

Charles Boyer

Marlon Brando

Joe E. Brown

Maurice Chevalier

Ronald Colman

Tony Curtis

W.C. Fields

Betty Grable

Helen Hayes

Alan Ladd

Lassie & Rin Tin Tin (a month on animals as Stars of the Month)

Peter Lawford

Marilyn Monroe

Ricardo Montalban

Anthony Perkins

Tyrone Power

Gene Tierney

 

Edited to remove Shelley Winters. LOL :)

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I think a case can be made for all of these. None have been featured as Star of the Month yet on TCM.

 

Alphabetically:

Dana Andrews

Joan Bennett

Ernest Borgnine

Charles Boyer

Marlon Brando

Joe E. Brown

Maurice Chevalier

Ronald Colman

Tony Curtis

W.C. Fields

Betty Grable

Helen Hayes

Alan Ladd

Lassie & Rin Tin Tin (a month on animals as Stars of the Month)

Peter Lawford

Marilyn Monroe

Ricardo Montalban

Anthony Perkins

Tyrone Power

Gene Tierney

Shelley Winters

 

Not to nitpick, this is just for the sake of accuracy. My records indicate that Shelley Winters was TCM's SOTM back in November 2002.

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Not to nitpick, this is just for the sake of accuracy. My records indicate that Shelley Winters was TCM's SOTM back in November 2002.

Thanks. The reason I made that error is because I had copied and pasted the Moderator's post about all the honorees into a Word file. And when I did a search by her name, the mod had misspelled Shelley as Shelly, so of course no Shelleys came up!

 

She could easily get a repeat as far as I'm concerned. But if we pull her from the list of the never-honored, maybe we could replace her with a month of character actors and actresses, so she could still be featured one of those evenings.

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