August 2017

GOLDIE HAWN (1945- ) – a self-made star.

August 31, 2017 // 0 Comments

  GOLDIE HAWN (1945 – )                           Goldie Hawn is a direct descendent of the youngest signer of the Declaration of Independence, one William Rutledge. If you have seen the musical 1776, Rutledge is the southern gentleman whose portrayer sings what is arguably the best song in the picture – Molasses to Rum. Mr. Rutledge went on to fight courageously in the [...]

PIER ANGELI (1932-71) – A casualty of stardom, adulation and the high life.

August 29, 2017 // 2 Comments

  PIER ANGELI (1932-71)                                      Anna Maria Pierangeli was born in Sardinia in 1932 and would one day evolve into Hollywood movie star Pier Angeli. Her twin sister, Maria Luisa, would also change her name and achieve limited screen success as Marisa Pavan. The family moved to Rome when the girls were three, and then to California in 1950. [...]

Barbara Stanwyck (1907-90).

August 27, 2017 // 2 Comments

  BARBARA STANWYCK                        Barbara Stanwyck was one of those actresses whose performances ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. From brilliant to lousy. Admittedly, most performers have roles they are extremely proud of and others that make them cringe, but Stanwyck was a bit different in that her best ever performance (in my opinion) and her worst ever [...]

What happened to Glenn Miller?

August 25, 2017 // 0 Comments

  Major Glenn Miller 1944 Bernie Woods was the Music Editor of Variety during the Big Band Era. In that capacity he got to know all the bandleaders, singers and musicians. His 1994 memoir titled ‘When the Music Stopped’ pulls no punches when he discusses individuals, and he had little time for the legendary Glenn Miller. To quote Bernie, ‘Miller was a cold, calculating man very [...]

The Divine Dinah Shore (1916-94).

August 23, 2017 // 2 Comments

  DINAH SHORE                                     She was born Frances Rose Shore in Winchester, Tennessee in 1916. Friends called her ‘Fanny’, but to the music-loving world she was known as Dinah Shore. She altered her Christian name after success with a song of the same name early in her career. The divine Dinah arrived on the recording scene in the late thirties. And [...]

SNAPSHOTS

August 21, 2017 // 6 Comments

           PIPER LAURIE (1932 – )                with Ronald Reagan in Louisa (1950)   with Paul Newman in The Hustler My favourite Piper Laurie performance was in The Hustler (1961), where she played Paul Newman’s lame girlfriend Sarah Packard. In her highly readable memoir she made no bones about her disdain for former US President Ronald Reagan. Of course, he [...]

PETER O’TOOLE – the actor and the man.

August 19, 2017 // 4 Comments

  PETER O’TOOLE   (1932 – 2013)                                      Peter O’Toole hailed from Leeds in Yorkshire. He always maintained he was born in Ireland, but there are simply no records indicating that. As a teenager he started out as a newspaper copy boy, showed promise as a reporter, but was drawn to the theatre. At 17 he made his stage [...]

STEVE MCQUEEN – Not a nice guy.

August 17, 2017 // 3 Comments

  Steve McQueen’s mother was a prostitute, his father a circus stuntman and neither cared a fig about their boy. He lost his virginity at 13 to an obese teenaged hooker who accepted candy for sex. At 16 he was a towel boy in a brothel and encouraged to sample the wares on offer. Shoplifting and stealing hubcaps would land him in Chino Reformatory in California for five years between 1944 [...]

The Many Loves of Bette Davis (1908-89).

August 15, 2017 // 0 Comments

  Bette Davis was never a raving beauty. Indeed, when Jack Warner sent a representative to the railway station to greet her on her arrival in Tinsel Town, the man returned empty-handed, declaring that nobody even remotely looking like a movie star got off the train. Be that as it may, she was a real man-eater once she got the hang of it. Claudette Colbert once said that the only big star she [...]

The Hollywood Canteen – a unique experience.

August 13, 2017 // 4 Comments

  Between 1941 and 1944 over 6,000 Hollywood workers entered the services, 1,500 of whom were registered actors and actresses. The ‘Hollywood Unit’ made training and recruitment films (and newsreels). One recruitment film starring Jimmy Stewart was said to have been responsible for 100,000 men joining the air force. Hundreds of stars, male and female, volunteered for the USO tours, [...]
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