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star of month march 2008


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*TCM Star of the Month - March 2008 -- Acting Dynasties*

 

http://www.tcm.com/thismonth/article/?cid=191889

 

 

Just in case the above link is being goofy...

 

 

*_Acting Dynasties Introduction_*

 

 

There?s no denying that acting talent not only runs in some families but absolutely gallops in others, something we?re going to look into every Thursday in primetime this month on TCM. We?ll be having a look, for instance, at the Fondas (Henry, Jane and Peter) and the Barrymores which includes John, Lionel, Ethel and John?s son who initially was billed as John Barrymore Jr. then as John Drew Barrymore; he also happens to be the father of today?s Drew Barrymore. But that?s only the start of it.

 

According to the dictionary, a dynasty is ?a family or group that maintains power for several generations? and we?re taking that literally. The actors in the family units we?re spotlighting have indeed served time as Hollywood powerhouses, and remained so though more than one generation. That includes Fairbanks pere and fils, the athletic and swashbucking Douglas Sr. and his son, the equally dashing and agile Doug Jr. Also the Douglas duo (Kirk and Michael), the Bridges boys (father Lloyd and sons Beau and Jeff) and two British clans which have also made indelible marks on movie audiences with their acting chops. the Redgraves (Sir Michael, Vanessa and Lynn) and the Mills (Sir John, Juliet and Hayley).

 

Of them all, however, one particular family of actors could rightly be the poster children for all acting dynasties in the motion picture field. Hail the Hustons! It all started with Walter Huston (1884-1950), one of the great actors of both stage and screen in the 1930s and 1940s. He begat son John Huston (1906-1987), who not only gained fame as a screenwriter and director but was also a dynamic actor in his own right, with an Oscar? nomination for his performance in 1963?s The Cardinal should anyone doubt it. Meanwhile, John begat daughter Anjelica Huston, born in 1952, and she became an Academy Award champ in her own right, thanks to her work in Prizzi?s Honor, a 1985 film directed by her father. It was four decades earlier that John Huston had done equally well for his dad when Walter H. was voted the Oscar? as the best supporting actor of 1948 for a film directed by John H., The Treasure of the Sierra Madre. It was that same masterful movie which also netted the son two Oscars? for himself, one for writing the year?s best screenplay, another as the year?s best director.

 

Well, on March 6 you can see all three of those Hustons showing what fine acting is all about -- Walter teamed with Humphrey Bogart in that much-Oscared The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, then John acting alongside Sean Connery and Candice Bergen in The Wind and the Lion, and also Anjelica joining Woody Allen, Mia Farrow and Martin Landau in Crimes and Misdemeanors.

 

Unfortunately, there aren?t enough Thursdays in the month to spotlight all the talented families who?ve produced more than one generation of noteable actors - such as the Bennetts (father Richard and daughters Constance & Joan) and those potent mother-daughter combinations which include Judy Garland and Liza Minnelli, Blythe Danner and Gwyneth Paltrow, Ingrid Bergman and Isabella Rossellini. Who knows? There may be a sequel in store. Meanwhile, though, we offer proof of that adage that ?The apple never falls far from the tree.? In the case of the acting dynasties we?re visiting this month on TCM.Tthe family trees have indeed produced fruit that?s not only golden but continues to have an incredible shelf life.

 

by Robert Osborne

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