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Summer Under The Stars 2010


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I think it depends on the age and maturity level of the viewer. Some new viewers would definitely 'catch on' to an essential film in a day-long tribute then stick around to uncover more gems. At the very least, 24 hours of essential movies for a given performer increases his or her exposure to audiences.

 

If a casual fan develops into a 'completist,' then that person will seek out the more obscure titles in the actor's filmography.

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> {quote:title=ClassicViewer wrote:}{quote}

>

>

> If a casual fan develops into a 'completist,' then that person will seek out the more obscure titles in the actor's filmography.

 

 

It's not always easy to find some of the more obscure titles of an actor's filmography.

 

Personally I like how TCM mixes up the schedule for Summer Under the Stars with famous and more obscure titles from an actor.

 

And as others have said it might just be matter of TCM not being able to obtain every film.

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> {quote:title=ClassicViewer wrote:}{quote}

> I think they should not even attempt to do a day on a star unless they can get all the essentials or the most essential films for that performer. Henry Fonda's day without THE GRAPES OF WRATH is just plain wrong.

>

> I don't understand why THE WOMEN is missing from Norma's day...that's an MGM film and should be easy for them to include.

>

> In the case of actors whose work they cannot get from other studios, then they should just save those stars for a special evening where they can highlight one or two rare gems, broadcast anytime throughout the year.

>

> But on a SUTS lineup, it should be actors for whom they can get all sorts of selections that completely encapsulate the actor's body of work. And it should definitely include films from the 70s, 80s and 90s if it's an actor who had a long career and made essential films in later decades.

>

> I am not averse to spreading an actor out over two days...I think there are many essential Clark Gable films that could take up two days. Same for Robert Taylor, William Powell, Bette Davis and Joan Crawford.

I think a mix of "essential" and lesser known/lesser seen titles is a good thing. If Bela Lugosi has a day (hint!), of course I would want DRACULA to be included. But there should be room for THE DEATH KISS, THE MYSTERIOUS MR. WONG and DARK EYES OF LONDON too.

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When I make lists, either for myself or for my friends and family...this is the criteria I go by when selecting films:

 

- I pick films in which the actor is at least fourth-billed or higher. (This ensures a good deal of screen time.)

 

- I pick films in which the actor is able to demonstrate a particular talent or type of character that may not be represented in his or her other films...like for Gene Kelly, I pick BLACK HAND or INHERIT THE WIND, to show he did more than just musical comedy.

 

- I pick films that may've earned the actor awards or recognition, even if it's a mostly forgotten film (because chances are the performance should not be missed).

 

- I pick films that I think the actor himself or herself preferred or enjoyed making...or that his or her family would pick to represent their career. That is what makes a film essential for me...I try to think about the actor's children and grandchildren and what roles they would take pride in having others remember about their famous relative.

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I agree, Prince, and it's nice to see THE STUDENT PRINCE in prime time instead of THE WOMEN, for a change. Wish they'd picked LET US BE GAY as one of the films, though -- it's one of the few 'Normas' I haven't seen. Still, it's a good lineup; I rather like Ms. Shearer.

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I'm moderately excited overall. The trending to 50's and later stars continues, which I understand, but not my preference.

 

The days I'm most excited for are: Today, Basil Rathbone!! :) Norma Shearer. Gene Tierney. And especially John Gilbert and Thelma Todd!!!

 

There are a few cool flicks that I'm looking forward to mixed in here and there. For example, on Woody Strode's day, there are two Bomba and two Tarzan flix in the mix! And on Bob Hope's day (a day I'm also kind of grooving to overall), there is a film he did with Paulette Godard that I've never seen from 1941! NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH.

 

Otherwise, I'm moderately to not interested in the rest....

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*I'm pleased THE WOMEN is not being shown on Norma's day. We see it enough.*

 

I agree. This is one film that gets plenty rotated year in, year out. Besides, it can fit under many stars' day. There are so many other deserving films of Norma's that are rarely if ever shown, and consequently not well known.

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I still think THE WOMEN is essential to Norma's career and should be included with any tribute for her. She is, after all, top-billed in it.

 

And on a softer note, I think her character in THE WOMEN is probably closest to her own real-life personality. It's not Juliet, it's not Marie, it's Norma all the way. For an understanding of this actress, THE WOMEN does need to be shown.

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I agree with you 100% that The Women is essential to Norma's career. The open question is should the movies shown on a day like SUTS be those that are essential even if some of these movies are shown often or have been shown recently OR is it better to show non-essential movies that are rarely shown?

 

I'm stuck on the fence on this one and being the program director is a no-win job.

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Good question. I noticed they picked a few of her silent films for SUTS. Maybe they could've rescheduled LADY OF THE NIGHT and A LADY OF CHANCE on a Sunday evening (since that is when they usually broadcast classic silent movies)...and then they could've aired THE WOMEN in that time slot.

 

I do think the most essential films for an actor need to be included during a tribute.

 

Edited by: ClassicViewer on Aug 3, 2010 3:10 PM

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Essential Norma Shearer IMHO:

 

The Trial of Mary Dugan

The Last of Mrs. Cheyney

The Divorcee

A Free Soul

Private Lives

Strange Interlude

Riptide

The Barretts of Wimpole Street

Romeo and Juliet

Marie Antoinette

Idiot's Delight

The Women

Escape

 

Most of these are not shown nearly as much as is The WOMEN by TCM, and were just as important to her career, if not more. THE WOMEN may have had her top-billed over many other renowned actresses, but is not as essential for her as it is for others-Joan Crawford, for example, which helped her in staging her latest comeback, or Rosalind Russell or Paulette Goddard, whose careers took off shortly thereafter.

 

It was important for her as one of the last (if not the last) decent films she was in. But its the cat-fest among familiar faces that has made it the camp classic that it is.

 

As program director, I'd skip this in a tribute to Norma (but not in one to Joan, etc.) over more worthy, less-shown films, again IMHO.

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I agree with some of those films you mentioned. THE DIVORCEE is an essential because it netted her an Oscar.

 

I think her most essential film is MARIE ANTOINETTE, because it really shows that she was the queen of MGM with an unlimited budget.

 

But I think THE WOMEN is right after MARIE...and I'd also pick BARRETTS and ESCAPE. (I think the casting is wrong in ROMEO so I would not pick that title.)

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> {quote:title=Arturo wrote:}{quote}

> Essential Norma Shearer IMHO:

>

> The Trial of Mary Dugan

> The Last of Mrs. Cheyney

> The Divorcee

> A Free Soul

> Private Lives

> Strange Interlude

> Riptide

> The Barretts of Wimpole Street

> Romeo and Juliet

> Marie Antoinette

> Idiot's Delight

> The Women

> Escape

>

> Most of these are not shown nearly as much as is The WOMEN by TCM, and were just as important to her career, if not more. THE WOMEN may have had her top-billed over many other renowned actresses, but is not as essential for her as it is for others-Joan Crawford, for example, which helped her in staging her latest comeback, or Rosalind Russell or Paulette Goddard, whose careers took off shortly thereafter.

>

> It was important for her as one of the last (if not the last) decent films she was in. But its the cat-fest among familiar faces that has made it the camp classic that it is.

>

> As program director, I'd skip this in a tribute to Norma (but not in one to Joan, etc.) over more worthy, less-shown films, again IMHO.

 

 

Arturo,

 

Don't overlook the Silents being shown. Ernst Lubitsch *OLD HEIDELBERG* is as good or better than any of these sound films that you listed. And it is not on DVD. Granted, Jean Hersholt almost steals the film away from it's two big name Stars. *LADY OF CHANCE* is also great. You won't want to miss that either.

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*What!?, Gene Tierney day and no "Laura" on the schedule, unless my eyes are playing tricks on me. Please tell me what that is all about?*

 

Once again with feeling, TCM was unable to lease the film from Fox. Fox has its own movie channel is not inclined to rent *Laura* to other channels.

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> {quote:title=SoCalGal16 wrote:}{quote}

> What!?, Gene Tierney day and no "Laura" on the schedule, unless my eyes are playing tricks on me. Please tell me what that is all about?

 

If you happen to get Fox Movie Channel, check their online schedule, they will be playing Laura quite a bit in the next few months.

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ClassicViewer wrote:

*But I think THE WOMEN is right after MARIE...*

 

Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy THE WOMEN, and when shown I usually watch it if I can. But I feel about it the way you do about SOME LIKE IT HOT, namely, that TCM shows it WAY too much.

And I also think it is less essential to Shearer than to some of the other actresses in it.

 

In my list of essential Shearer movies, I realized most of her talkies were on it, so I chose not to list any of her silents (of which I am not as thoroughly familiar), not that I don't think none should be on the list.

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mr6666,

 

Record everything! Firstly, THE BIG PARADE the greatest movie still not on DVD, by a significant margin in my opinion. Certainly, BARDELYS THE MAGNIFICENT because it was lost for 70 years. DESERT NIGHTS is missing about a reel, but is very enjoyable for Jack's last Silent film. THE SHOW has not been shown since it debuted on TCM in January of 2007. Is DOWNSTAIRS on the schedule? How about THE PHANTOM OF PARIS?

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mr6666,

 

John Gilbert wrote *DOWNSTAIRS.* I have never seen *THE CAPTAIN HATES THE SEA* myself. The myth about Gilbert's poor speaking voice is simply absurd. There were Silent Stars that did have rather poor speaking voices. Charles Farrell comes quickly to mind. Gilbert was not one of them. I'm a huge fan of the Silent Farrell, but his talking is hard to endure. Yikes!

 

For Norma Shearer day, today, I would definitely record *A LADY OF CHANCE* if you haven't seen it. A wonderful Romantic/Screw-ball comedy, though still a Silent. And *OLD HEIDELBERG* is one of my favorite films. As far as I'm concerned, it's as good as anything Ernst Lubitsch ever did.

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Saw "A Lady Of Chance" this morning and liked it a great deal; Shearer was as effective in silents as she was in talkies, with an underrated feel for comedy. Johnny Mack Brown is a handsome, if somewhat bland, leading man, and I particularly enjoyed Gwen Lee, who was both attractive and funny. Not sure why Gwen didn't continue her success into the 1930s -- given that she was from Nebraska, I doubt an accent had anything to do with it. Perhaps styles simply changed, and she was perceived as yesterday's news.

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I agree, everything from Gilbert's day! The silents and the talkies, too! I'm sorry they aren't playing FAST WORKERS, but they are showing lots of great stuff! I can't wait, one of my favorite days this month!

 

I also agree that the voice thing is simply not the case. I thought his voice just fine and really like most of his talking films.

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