August 2015

DORIS DAY – Class with a capital ‘C’.

August 10, 2015 // 6 Comments

  It is hard to imagine it, but on April 3, 2016, Doris Day will be 94 years old. Ninety-four! I still watch her best movies, the ones made in the fifties, and still marvel at her exuberance, her vitality, and her unmistakable singing (and acting) talent. Movies back then had a kind of innocence, especially regarding sex, a legacy, no doubt, of the rules and restrictions imposed upon the [...]

The real ‘Birdman of Alcatraz’.

August 8, 2015 // 5 Comments

  One of the many movies I look at in Movies Based On True Stories (2015), is the 1962 biopic, Birdman of Alcatraz, starring Burt Lancaster as the ‘birdman’ Robert Stroud. As a sample of what you can expect to find in this, my second book, I thought I might post some facts here for your perusal. The real story is such a far cry from the one depicted in the United Artists film that it [...]

SPENCER TRACY – A nightmare of a man.

August 6, 2015 // 8 Comments

  As an actor Spencer Tracy had few peers and cinema-goers adored him. Off screen he was a very ordinary human being, a man beset with all kinds of problems. He was a violent alcoholic his entire life and a rampant womanizer who had almost as many conquests to his name as Gable although, unlike ‘the King’, he is alleged to have taken male lovers as well. When he went on a ‘bender’, [...]

What’s in a Name – Part Two?

August 4, 2015 // 0 Comments

  Part Two of ‘What’s in a Name?’ features some of the more stupid names thought up by the studios in their endeavours to create phony images for their stars. One of the silliest was the one they lumbered poor Ann Sheridan with – The Oomph Girl. She simply did not get it, and who could blame her. ‘Oomph’ is what a fat man says when he leans over to tie his shoelace in a telephone [...]

What’s in a name Part One?

August 2, 2015 // 0 Comments

Back in the good old studio days it was customary for studios to come up with snappy nicknames for their female stars. Well, they thought they were snappy, anyway. For some reason these were seldom given to male actors, although that is not to say that some of these guys didn’t have nicknames of their own long before their movie careers took off. John ‘Duke’ Wayne was one, for example. As a [...]
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