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The Essentials: The Brad Bird Era begins May 2


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Lord Attenborough's 1982 Oscar-winning biopic "Gandhi" begins with the Mahatma's Jan 30, 1948 assassination and follows it with a funeral procession attended by world dignitaries. The film comes full circle at the end as the ashes of the revered hero of India are scattered on the Ganges River. 

 

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I find it interesting that Rudyard Kipling was depicted in films based on his works. In George Stevens' 1938 screen version of Kipling's 1890 poem "Gunga Din," Reginald Sheffield portrayed the famed British author and journalist.

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In John Huston's 1975 dramatization of Kipling's 1888 short story "The Man Who Would Be King," Christopher Plummer appeared as the writer as he became acquainted with two former British officers in India with bold plans. Sir Michael Caine played Peachy Carnehan. Sir Sean Connery was Daniel Dravot. 

The Man Who Would Be King (1975)

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Kipling seems to pop up everywhere. In "Night of the Long Knives," a 1966 episode of the ABC sci-fi series "The Time Tunnel," the young journalist (portrayed by David Watson) teamed up with the 20th-century American time travelers Tony Newman (James Darren) and Doug Phillips (Robert Colbert). Their goal: To prevent a scheming chieftain (Malachi Throne) from ambushing British troops at the  Afghanistan/India border in 1886.  

The Time Tunnel Episode 14: Night of the Long Knives | The Time Travel Nexus

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The 2007 British made-for-television film  "My Boy Jack" was based on Kipling's 1916 poem about a young soldier killed in World War I. The production focused on the short life of Kipling's son John, who was declared missing in action in France in September 1915. The TV movie was based on a play by David Haig, who portrayed Kipling. The drama also starred Kim Cattrall as Kipling's wife Caroline, Daniel Radcliffe as Jack, and Carey Mulligan as the author's daughter Elsie. "My Boy Jack" premiered on PBS' "Masterpiece" series in April 2008.

My Boy Jack,' on PBS, Is a Kipling Adventure Based on Fact - The New York  Times

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Gene Kelly and Donald  O'Connor's "Fit As a Fiddle" sequence in "Singin' in the Rain" almost certainly inspired a scene from Bob Giraldi's 1983 music video for the Sir Paul McCartney-Michael Jackson No. 1 hit "Say Say Say." 

say say say | Tumblr

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Debbie Reynolds (born Mary Frances Reynolds in El Paso, Texas) was a 19-year-old non-dancer when she filmed "Singin' in the Rain" (Gene Kelly taught her well). Were she alive today, Reynolds assuredly would be ecstatic about the birth of her first great-grandchild.

Actress Billie Lourd, Reynolds' 28-year-old granddaughter and the only child of the late actress and writer Carrie Fisher, gave birth to  a son on September 24, 2020. The baby, named Kingston Fisher Lourd Rydell, is the product of Billie's relationship with her fiancé, actor Austen Rydell.

Lourd became a third-generation actress five years ago as a cast member of the FOX TV thriller "Scream Queens." She also has appeared in installments of FOX's "American Horror Story" series, recent "Star Wars" films and director Olivia Wilde's critically acclaimed 2019 screen comedy "Booksmart."

Inside Billie Lourd's Life 6 Months After Her Mom & Grandma's Deaths - E!  Online

Lourd and Fisher helped celebrate Reynolds' acceptance of the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award in 2015.

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 Gene Kelly's iconic dance to the title song of "Singin' in the Rain" was parodied in an horrific rape scene in Stanley Kubrick's futuristic "A Clockwork Orange" (1971). In the drama based on Anthony Burgess' 1962 dystopian novel, the sociopathic Alex DeLarge (Malcolm McDowell) assaults a woman (Adrienne Corri) in her home -- and in her husband's presence -- while singing the song without musical accompaniment.

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On 10/8/2020 at 4:57 AM, jakeem said:

Kipling seems to pop up everywhere. In "Night of the Long Knives," a 1966 episode of the ABC sci-fi series "The Time Tunnel," the young journalist (portrayed by David Watson) teamed up with the 20th-century American time travelers Tony Newman (James Darren) and Doug Phillips (Robert Colbert). Their goal: To prevent a scheming chieftain (Malachi Throne) from ambushing British troops at the  Afghanistan/India border in 1886.  

The Time Tunnel Episode 14: Night of the Long Knives | The Time Travel Nexus

I love The Time Tunnel !!  I'll admit that I originally watched it for James Darren; but I loved the story and how each episode tied to  the next and how each one focused on a different historical event. I was originally DVR-ing the episodes on ME-TV, but I got sick of all the commercials.  I wanted to buy the series on DVD, but it was so expensive and the distributor did the thing that I hate: they took a one-season show and split it up into two volumes instead of releasing the full series together.  For whatever reason, Vol 1 is relatively inexpensive and easy to find, but volume 2 seems to be out of print.  It is very expensive.  I ended up buying the full series on Amazon Video for $10.  I was excited about the purchase.  I think I am halfway through the series. 

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1 hour ago, speedracer5 said:

I love The Time Tunnel !!  I'll admit that I originally watched it for James Darren; but I loved the story and how each episode tied to  the next and how each one focused on a different historical event. I was originally DVR-ing the episodes on ME-TV, but I got sick of all the commercials.  I wanted to buy the series on DVD, but it was so expensive and the distributor did the thing that I hate: they took a one-season show and split it up into two volumes instead of releasing the full series together.  For whatever reason, Vol 1 is relatively inexpensive and easy to find, but volume 2 seems to be out of print.  It is very expensive.  I ended up buying the full series on Amazon Video for $10.  I was excited about the purchase.  I think I am halfway through the series. 

I believe it was the best of the Irwin Allen TV series -- although it always annoyed me when they brought in futuristic aliens right out of "Lost in Space." The series was scheduled for a Season 2 (1967-68), but Allen refused to cut the show's budget -- and ABC replaced it with the series "Custer."

My older brother was in junior high school on January 27, 1967 when the Biblical episode "The Walls of Jericho" first aired. He said the program was interrupted by an ABC News special bulletin advising that one of the Apollo 1 astronauts had been killed in a capsule fire during a test at Cape Kennedy. The program resumed, but eventually was interrupted by another bulletin that said all  three astronauts -- Virgil "Gus" Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee -- had been killed. Needless to say, my brother never saw the rest of the episode until it was repeated during the summer. A classic example of a TV series about history being pre-empted by instant history.

I believe MeTV begins a new cycle of "The Time Tunnel" next week with Episode 1, "Rendezvous with Yesterday" -- about the Titanic.

 

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44 minutes ago, jakeem said:

I believe it was the best of the Irwin Allen TV series -- except when they brought in futuristic aliens right out of "Lost in Space." The series was scheduled for a Season 2 (1967-68), but Allen refused to cut the show's budget -- and ABC replaced it with the series "Custer."

My older brother was in junior high school on January 27, 1967 when the Biblical episode "The Walls of Jericho" first aired. He said the program was interrupted by an ABC News special bulletin advising that one of the Apollo 1 astronauts had been killed in a capsule fire during a test at Cape Kennedy. The program resumed, but eventually was interrupted by another bulletin that said all  three astronauts -- Virgil "Gus" Grissom, Ed White and Roger Chaffee -- had been killed. Needless to say, my brother never saw the rest of the episode until it was repeated during the summer. A classic example of a TV series about history being pre-empted by instant history.

I believe MeTV begins a new cycle of "The Time Tunnel" next week with Episode 1, "Rendezvous with Yesterday" -- about the Titanic.

 

Wow.  That's an interesting story.  I wish that Irwin Allen had been able to film a second season.  I'm interested if Tony and Doug would have just continued floating around in time or if they would have been rescued at some point.  One thing that I love, is that Doug is wearing his 1910s suit (that he gets in Episode #1 to fit in on the Titanic) and Tony wears his contemporary green turtleneck the entire time.  At no point, no matter what time they're in, the people they speak to never question their clothing. They seem to question the strangers and initially ignore their warnings, but eventually go along with it.  And, it also seems that "The Time Tunnel" does not try to follow one of the cardinal rules of Time Travel: Do not change the events of the past. Most of the time, the event happens anyway, but that's in spite of Tony and Doug's warnings and attempts to stop it. 

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2 minutes ago, speedracer5 said:

Wow.  That's an interesting story.  I wish that Irwin Allen had been able to film a second season.  I'm interested if Tony and Doug would have just continued floating around in time or if they would have been rescued at some point.  One thing that I love, is that Doug is wearing his 1910s suit (that he gets in Episode #1 to fit in on the Titanic) and Tony wears his contemporary green turtleneck the entire time.  At no point, no matter what time they're in, the people they speak to never question their clothing. They seem to question the strangers and initially ignore their warnings, but eventually go along with it.  And, it also seems that "The Time Tunnel" does not try to follow one of the cardinal rules of Time Travel: Do not change the events of the past. Most of the time, the event happens anyway, but that's in spite of Tony and Doug's warnings and attempts to stop it. 

It always amazes me when an Oscar winner pops up on an episode. "Crack of Doom," about the eruption of the Krakatoa volcano in 1883, guest starred the actress Ellen McRae, who eventually began using her married name, Burstyn.

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3 minutes ago, jakeem said:

It always amazes me when an Oscar winner pops up on an episode. "Crack of Doom," about the eruption of the Krakatoa volcano in 1883, guest starred the actress Ellen McRae, who eventually began using her married name, Burstyn.

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Yes! Ellen McRae aka Burstyn, is also in one of my favorite dumb teen movies, For Those Who Think Young, with James Darren, Tina Louise, Pamela Tiffin, Nancy Sinatra, and Bob Denver! He didn't win an Oscar, but Gary Merrill is in the first episode as is Michael Rennie. Looking over some of the cast listings, it looks like Robert Duvall is in an episode too!

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57 minutes ago, speedracer5 said:

Yes! Ellen McRae aka Burstyn, is also in one of my favorite dumb teen movies, For Those Who Think Young, with James Darren, Tina Louise, Pamela Tiffin, Nancy Sinatra, and Bob Denver! He didn't win an Oscar, but Gary Merrill is in the first episode as is Michael Rennie. Looking over some of the cast listings, it looks like Robert Duvall is in an episode too!

Susan Hampshire, whom I discovered in the 1960s Disney movies "The Fighting Prince of Donegal" and "The Three Lives of Thomasina," also is in the Titanic episode. She went on to become a formidable actress, winning Primetime Emmy Awards for "The Forsyte Saga" and "The First Churchills."

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"Singin' in the Rain" was scheduled to make its first television network appearance on NBC's Monday Night at the Movies on November 25, 1963.

1080p HD "Good Morning" - Singin' in the Rain (1952) - YouTube

As fate would have it, the telecast was postponed because of the continuing coverage of the assassination and funeral of President John F. Kennedy. "Singin' in the Rain" finally made it to television on January 13, 1964.

Processing tragedy as a little girl: My case for JFK "griefporn" | Salon.com

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"Ace in the Hole," producer-director Billy Wilder's hard-hitting 1951 drama about an unscrupulous newspaper reporter in New Mexico earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay (Wilder, Lesser Samuels and Walter Newman). 

Kirk Douglas had one of his best roles as Charles Tatum, a former big-city journalist who manipulates a breaking news story so that it will benefit him most.

 

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The late Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert added the film to his list of Great Movies and noted that it was not a success in America at first.

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"Wilder (1906-2002) came to 'Ace in the Hole' right after 'Sunset Boulevard' (1950), which had 11 Oscar nominations and won three," Ebert wrote. "Known for his biting cynicism and hard edges in such masterpieces as 'Double Indemnity' (1944) and 'The Lost Weekend' (1945), he outdid himself with 'Ace in the Hole.' The film's harsh portrait of an American media circus appalled the critics and repelled the public; it failed on first release, and after it won European festivals and was retitled 'The Big Carnival,' it failed again."
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At one point during the drama, the character played by Jan Sterling asks Tatum about a story he's been writing: "What's that you been playin' on your typewriter all night? From upstairs it sounded like that 'Sabre Dance.' "
 
Wilder apparently loved the Soviet/Armenian composer Aram Khachaturian's rousing musical piece from the 1942 ballet "Gayane." The filmmaker used it as the recurring theme of his 1961 Cold War comedy "One, Two, Three." It was James Cagney's last motion picture for 20 years. He came out of retirement for a brief role in the 1981 drama "Ragtime."
 
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"I don't go to church. Kneeling bags my nylons."
 
Oscar-nominated for Best Writing, Story and Screenplay: ACE IN THE HOLE, tonight at 8:00 PM on #TCM. I don't know if I've seen Jan Sterling in anything else. What a coincidence: FLESH AND FURY follows at 10:15. #tcmessentials
 
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 For the 37th Academy Awards ceremony held on April 5, 1965, Peter Sellers was nominated for Best Actor of 1964 in Stanley Kubrick's "Doctor Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb." The unique thing about his nomination was that it was for his roles as three different characters --British RAF officer Lionel Mandrake,  U.S. President Merkin Muffley and the title character, a German-born nuclear expert in a wheelchair. Playing multiple characters was old hat for Sellers. He also did it in "The Mouse That Roared," the 1959 satire based on a 1955 novel by Leonard Wibberley.

Actors that single-handedly carried a movie | NeoGAF

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 Sellers was scheduled to play a fourth character in "Doctor Strangelove" -- Maj. T.J. "King" Kong, who rides to glory on an H-bomb at the end of the film.

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But the British actor broke an ankle and was replaced as Kong by the veteran Western actor Slim Pickens.

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