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robert osbourne


doddiepink77
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"Osbourne" , that must be the Canadian spelling for Osborne. :) Anyway, I too like RO and Drew is okay for the entertainment value, although she doesn't add a lot of insight for me, or she just isn't very good at articulating (impressive word, eh) herself. Always nice to see a new member, please stick around and join in.

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Robert Osborne and Ben Mankiewicz are both very good hosts. Drew Barrymore of course is just there because of her family's background. I always enjoy the guest programmer series - some of the people that are featured on that have very interesting insights.

 

Take the last two guest programmers (Madeline Stowe this month and Frank Rich back in July). Each of them had really interesting things to say about the films they selected and how those pictures influenced them.

 

Most of TCM's on-air personalities are very interesting. However, for myself and many other Canadians (and also people in U.S. border cities that got TVO), no one will ever be able to hold a candle to Elwy Yost, the popular host of "Saturday Night at the Movies" on Ontario's public broadcaster. His love and enthusiasm for the movies was just infectious.

 

Elwy spent a few years in the mid-80s as the film critic at The Toronto Star newspaper, but he just wasn't cut out to be a movie reviewer - he loved the movies so much he could find something good to say about any film. I just wanted to mention the influence Elwy Yost had on several generations of Canadians. He is the reason I love the movies.

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I don't want to derail any thread devoted to Robert Osborne, but I, too, was largely raised on golden age Hollywood films brought to Canadian television by Elwy Yost. With his avuncular personality and, being a former school teacher, Yost was always "Uncle Elwy" to me because of the warmth that he emitted and enthusiasm for films. Elwy Yost felt like family, without ever even meeting him.

 

However, one day I did meet him. A friend of mine had called TV Ontario, the channel for which Elwy worked, for some programming information. Yost answered the phone himself, they talked a bit and Elwy made an invitation for my friend to drop by any time for a visit. My friend asked if I could come along, to which Elwy was agreable.

 

When we showed up one day (bearing gifts, a couple of video tapes of films we were pretty sure Yost didn't own), it soon became apparent that Elwy had forgotten about his telephone invitation. However, he was as gracious as could be desired, inviting us to join us in his office.

 

We talked for about a half hour or so, and I noticed that Elwy, always a humble man who said he would gladly welcome any viewers in if he met them, allowed my friend and I to do a lot of the talking. At the end of the conversation, Elwy gave us an invitation to drop by his home some time for a beer.

 

We always assumed that he was just being polite, so never tried to follow up on it. A few years later, though, my friend had a conversation with a good friend of Yost's, making passing reference to the home invitation. The friend said that Elwy was a shy man so that if he made an invitation of that kind he probably really meant it.

 

And that was rather nice to hear, that Elwy liked us enough to do that. But then, Elwy was, sort of like Will Rogers, I guess, as Dargo suggested, the kind of man who never met a man he didn't like, and never saw a film of which he couldn't find some good things to say.

 

Sorry for the ramble. But seeing Elwy Yost's name made me want to pay a brief tribute to a true movie fan who was able to convey his enthusiasm to thousands of other Canadian movie buffs, bringing them films that they probably wouldn't have been able to see otherwise at a time when only a few other stations were showing the golden Hollywood studio system nuggets.

 

Good ol' Uncle Elwy!

 

(By the way, Elwy often travelled to California and other spots in the 80s and 90s, doing probably hundreds of interviews with those involved in the movie making processes of Hollywood - everyone from Jimmy Stewart to Bob Hope to Greer Garson to Henry Fonda, among so many others. I wonder what has happened to those interviews).

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Thanks for the news, twinkeee. I particularly remember thinking that that Garson interview at her New Mexico home was a particularly good one. She comes across exactly as you would hope Greer Garson would be in real life. Completely unaffected and down to earth, just like Elwy.

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Yes, I remember watching that interview with Greer Garson on TV and I was quite surprised to come across it on YouTube so I thought you might like to know about it. I believe there is also an interview with Frank Capra on YouTube.

 

Some stars claimed that the longest interviews they had ever had were by Elwy Yost! Given that he was Canadian and doing the interviews for a Canadian station, TVO, that always surprised me !

 

It was also unique that he would do these intervies in their homes!

 

Twink

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Well, a lot of Ontarians would have had access to Elwy on TV Ontario. I'm not certain how much Canadians outside of Ontario would have seen him. This is really a question for other Canadians on this message board, as well. He clearly increased my passion for old films with the often wonderful TV Ontario double bills that he had on Saturday nights.

 

Here are a couple of YouTube links to interviews of Elwy's:

 

with Greer Garson (Part 1):

 

 

 

with Greer Garson (Part 2):

 

 

 

with John Candy (in character as Dr. Tongue):

 

 

 

with Eleanor Keaton (Buster's widow):

 

 

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