“Forgotten Hollywood”- Hammerstein Museum in the Works…

December 31st, 2014

Manny P. here…

   A plan to convert the former home of Broadway lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II into a tourist attraction appears to have created a conflict. But, his grandson hopes public officials will soon start singing a different tune. The composer spent 20 years at Highland Farm in suburban Philadelphia, where he co-wrote musical blockbusters, such as Oklahoma, Carousel, The King and I, and South Pacific. Will Hammerstein wants to turn the property into the Oscar Hammerstein II Music and Theatre Education Center. However, Doylestown Township supervisors and neighbors object to the scale of the $20 million proposal, saying it’s too much development for the parcel. A zoning hearing will be held on January 12th.

   Hammerstein purchased Highland Farm in 1940, and it was there he and Richard Rodgers formed their creative partnership. The farm was the locale where they worked together on The Sound of Music, and other productions. James, his youngest son,  attended nearby George School with Stephen Sondheim, who became a frequent visitor to the farm. Sondheim followed in Oscar’s path, penning lyrics to Into the Woods and West Side Story. After Hammerstein died of cancer at his beloved farm in 1960, his widow sold the land.

   There were many owners over the years, losing acreage as the plot was subdivided in a largely suburban county. Current owner Christine Cole has turned the main building into a bed-and-breakfast, with each room dedicated to musicals by Rodgers and Hammerstein.

   Then, Will Hammerstein made a reservation at the B&B in 2010. He was in town for a reunion at George School. Together, Cole and Hammerstein came up with an idea for a classic Broadway fan experience: a house tour, a museum exhibit in the barn and capped off with an actual performance. It would require building a 400-seat venue, plus a parking lot on the now five-acre lot.

   Adjacent property owners have major concerns about noise, traffic, and storm water runoff, according to their lawyer. The zoning board meeting isn’t the only hurdle; approvals from other commissions would be required before ground could be broken. And then there’s fundraising. Will Hammerstein, a lawyer living in Brooklyn, incorporated a nonprofit to help.

pic_piano3   Members of the local arts council expressed enthusiasm for the project, as it would add cache to a region that already boasts the James A. Michener Museum and Pearl S. Buck House — authors who were both good friends with Oscar Hammerstein.

   In spite of the imposing odds, the collaborative team wishes to make the Pennsylvania hills alive with the sound of Rodgers and Hammerstein.

   Hopefully, they will succeed.

Until next year>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Oscar Legend Belongs to the Ages…

December 30th, 2014

Manny P. here…elle-1938-Luise-Rainer-eighty-five-years-of-golden-glamour-xln-xln

   Luise Rainer  made cinematic history as the first person to win multiple Academy Awards and to garner them consecutively for her roles in The Great Ziegfeld and The Good Earth. Only four other movie stars have ever won back-to-back Oscars: Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Jason Robards, and Tom Hanks. Rainer was also the oldest surviving actor owning a golden statuette, earning both in 1936 and 1937.

   She began her acting career as a teenager under innovative Austrian director Max Reinhardt, and appeared in several German films. In the mid-1930s, she was discovered by a talent scout from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer – on the lookout for new European beauties to rival Greta Garbo – and whisked to Hollywood. Her first American film was the largely forgotten Escapade, but the next roles made her a bona-fide star.        LUISE RAINER ——>

   She was later dubbed the Viennese teardrop, for her dramatic telephone scene in the bio-pic about the Broadway producer, Florenz Ziegfeld, that also starred William Powell, Myrna Loy, and Frank Morgan. She played Anna Held, the first wife of the famed impresario. For her next role, producer Irving Thalberg was convinced she would also be able to play the part of a poor Chinese farm peasant in the film based on Pearl Buck’s novel about hardship in China. All of a sudden, Luise was the studio’s hottest property.

Luise Ranier   Rainer made several pictures in 1937-1938, including Big City (with Spencer Tracy) Toy Wife, and The Great Waltz, but she chafed under the studio system and clashed with mogul Louis B. Mayer, and soon moved to New York. Despite the negativity, Rainer was one of the actresses considered for the role of Scarlett O’Hara in Gone With the Wind, but the idea was never well-received, and she wasn’t given a screen test. She was later bypassed for consideration in Madame Curie and For Whom the Bell Tolls. Greer Garson and Ingrid Bergman benefited from these casting decisions. Adding to her rapid decline, some feel, was poor career advice given to her by husband, playwright Clifford Odets, along with the unexpected death, at age 37, of Thalberg, whom she greatly admired. Rainer made only one more studio era film – Hostages in 1943 – but spent most of her later life in England. Some film historians consider her the most extreme case of the so-called Oscar curse in Hollywood mythology.

   Federico Fellini enticed her to play the cameo role of Dolores in his 1960 Oscar-winning La Dolce Vita to the point of her travelling to Rome, but she quit the production prior to shooting, a fact that has been attributed either to her resistance to an unwanted sex scene, or to her insistence on overseeing her own dialogue. She appeared sporadically on television, such as guest starring in Combat and The Love Boat.

   Rainer took her oath of allegiance to the United States in the 1940s, but she would end up living in the United Kingdom and Switzerland, instead. She made appearances at the 1998 and 2003 Academy Awards ceremonies as part of special retrospective tributes to past Oscar winners. In April 2010, she returned to Hollywood to present a TCM festival screening of The Good Earth, accompanied by an interview with host Robert Osborne.

   One of the all-time greats of Hollywood’s Golden Age of the 1930s, Luise Rainer was 104 (two weeks shy of her birthday).

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Remembering Alamo Village…

December 26th, 2014

Manny P. here…300px-The_Alamo_1960_poster

   Time and Mother Nature are threatening to dismantle The Alamo. Not the original, but the replica 18th-century Spanish mission and Old West movie set John Wayne built for his Oscar-nominated 1960 movie. For decades, it was a tourist mecca and film production site. Alamo Village, a 400-acre plot of land about 120 miles west of San Antonio, was carved out of a large ranch in the late 1950s for Wayne’s directorial debut.

   Starring Richard Widmark as Jim Bowie and the Duke as Davy Crockett, The Alamo had an estimated $12 million budget, huge for its time. The 4-foot-thick Alamo facade was modeled off a 1936 map of the historic building — drawn up for the Texas centennial — and set construction took nearly two years. Unlike the real Alamo, which is dwarfed by taller buildings in the heart of San Antonio, the view from John Wayne’s Alamo offers a panorama of iconic Texas and Western images.

   In its heyday, Wayne’s Alamo hosted James Stewart, Dean Martin, Raquel Welch, and Willie Nelson. This is where James Arness reprised his famous Matt Dillon role in a Gunsmoke television movie. In all, nearly 40 major film and small screen productions, plus hundreds of commercials, documentaries, and music videos were shot at Alamo Village. And musical shows, comedy skits, and staged gunfights drew hundreds of tourists daily.

   At the main entrance to the ranch, only an abandoned ticket booth and a weathered sign telling visitors they’re entering the world’s largest outdoor movie set hint at its storied past. In recent years, a large crack has developed on the front of the Alamo facade. A tree grows inside. Walls and structures that have been replaced are failing.

   Corpus Christi businessman David Jones envisions saving Alamo Village as a Texas version of Old Tucson, a thriving Old West theme park in southern Arizona. Jones, who describes himself as a lifelong friend of the former owners, says he’s close to raising the $8 million he believes is necessary to buy the property and ready it for visitors.

1854_Alamo   John_Wayne_in_Wake_of_the_Red_Witch_trailer

   If preserved, two icons will be remembered… The Alamo and John Wayne (above).

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- The Origins of the Christmas Card…

December 24th, 2014

Manny P. here…

800px-Firstchristmascard   The Christmas card dates back to Victorian-era England. Sir Henry Cole commissioned John Calcott Horsley to design a card for the holiday in 1843. Two batches totaling 2,050 cards were printed and sold that year for a shilling each. Early English cards rarely showed winter or religious themes, instead favoring flowers, fairies, and other fanciful designs that reminded the recipient of the approach of Spring. Humorous and sentimental images of children and animals were popular, as were increasingly elaborate shapes, decorations, and materials. Official Christmas cards began with Queen Victoria in the 1840s. The British Royal family’s cards continued to reflect significant personal events of the year.

   Festive greeting cards were imported to America from England until 1874, when German-born printer Louis Prang produced the first American-made cards. Nineteenth century designs ranged from depictions of Christmas trees and Nativity scenes to cards shaped like bells and candles, or decorated with silk and satin.

 Victorian_Christmas_Card   Victorian_Christmas_Card_-_11222208036

    By the early twentieth century, sending Christmas cards had become a popular custom in Britain and the United States. The production of Christmas cards became a profitable business for many stationery manufacturers with the design of cards continually evolving with changing tastes and printing techniques.

   The World Wars brought cards with patriotic themes. Cartoon illustrations caught on with nostalgic, sentimental, and religious images. Of course, movie stars joined in on the tradition, dating back to the Silent Era, and into Hollywood’s Golden Age.

elizabeth taylor   esther williams


   Have a very Merry Christmas!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- National Film Registry Classic Adds…

December 18th, 2014

Manny P. here…DownArgentineWay1

   Among the 25 cinematic additions within the Library of Congress National Film Registry are classics from Hollywood’s Golden Age. The 2014 class includes:

~ Down Argentine Way (1940) – Betty Grable’s first starring role in a Technicolor musical happened only because Alice Faye had an attack of appendicitis, but Grable took advantage of the situation and made herself as important to 20th Century Fox as Faye. Released a year before America entered World War II, this film and others starring Grable established her as the pinup queen. Carmen Miranda made her American film debut, and the Nicholas Brothers’ unparalleled dance routines dazzle.

~ The Power and the Glory (1933) – Preston Sturges’ first original screenplay, it’s a haunting tragedy in sharp contrast to the comedies of the 1940s that established him as one of America’s foremost directors. Compared favorably to novels by Henry James and Joseph Conrad for its extensive mix of narration with dramatic action (Fox Studios coined the word narratage to publicize the innovative technique), The Power and the Glory introduced a non-chronological structure to mainstream motion pictures that later influenced the production of Citizen Kane. Spencer Tracy’s performance was one of the fullest characterizations ever achieved on screen.

~ Rio Bravo (1959) – As the legend goes, this Western directed by Howard Hawks was produced as a riposte to Fred Zinnemann’s High Noon. John Wayne stars and is supported by Walter Brennan, Dean Martin and Ricky Nelson. Angie Dickinson is the love interest, and Claude Akins, Ward Bond, and Pedro Gonzalez are also featured. A smart Western where gunplay is matched by wordplay, Rio Bravo is a terrific ensemble piece and it’s director Hawks’ last great film.

Ruggles_of_red_gap~ Ruggles of Red Gap (1935) – Charles Laughton is known for such serious roles as Nero, King Henry VIII, and Captain Bligh. He took on comedy in this tale of an English manservant won in a poker game by Charlie Ruggles, a member of Red Gap, part of Washington’s social elite. Aided by ZaSu Pitts and Roland Young, Laughton really shows his acting range. It didn’t hurt that Leo McCarey, who had just worked with W.C. Fields, was in the director’s chair. McCarey, who could pull heartstrings or touch funny bones with equal skill, started his long directorial career working with such comedic icons as Laurel & Hardy, and he created several beloved American films.

~ State Fair (1933) – For director Henry King to create a film that celebrated an institution as beloved as the State Fair, it required the presence of a cherished and steadfast star; in this case, America’s favorite cowboy Will Rogers. The humorist found a superlative vehicle for his homespun persona in this small town slice-of-life setting. He is assisted by Janet Gaynor, Lew Ayres, and Sally Eilers.

220px-Houseofwax1~ The Gang’s All Here (1943) – Although not remembered as well today as those put out by MGM, 20th Century-Fox’s big Technicolor musicals stand up well in comparison. Alice Faye was Fox’s #1 musical star. Carmen Miranda and her outrageous costume is highlighted in the legendary musical number The Lady in the Tutti Frutti Hat. Busby Berkeley, who had completed stints choreographing musicals at MGM and at Warner Bros., directed this gem.

~ House of Wax (1953) – A remake of 1933’s Mystery of the Wax Museum, the House of Wax expanded upon the earlier horror tale of a mad sculptor who encases his victims’ corpses in wax. It was produced by Warner Bros., and is considered the first full-length 3-D color film ever produced by a major film studio. Along with its technical innovations, House of Wax also solidified Vincent Price’s new role as a master of the macabre. Phyllis Kirk, Frank Lovejoy, and Carolyn Jones complete the cast.


   Other added celluloid include… Saving Private Ryan,  Little Big ManRosemary’s Baby, Ferris Bueller’s Day OffThe Big Lebowski, and Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- When Hollywood and History Collide..

December 17th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   The premise of the Forgotten Hollywood Book Series is that Hollywood history and American history intersect in what I metaphorically call Hollywood-and-Vine moments. The year 2014 will be remembered for its holiday season as Sony Pictures pulled the plug on a film release due to cyber and personal threats on our freedom to make satirical comment, and even, to simply attend a movie with your family on Christmas. The cyber threats were quite real, laying waste to Sony Pictures Entertainment as they were internet hacked. First-run movies and employee’s private emails were illegally distributed to the public. The implied 9-11 style security threats on movie theaters remains conjecture as of this writing.

   Under the threat of terrorist attacks and with the nation’s largest multiplex chains pulling the film from its screens, Sony Pictures took the unprecedented step of pulling the December 25th release of The Interview. Sony cancelled the motion picture release in light of the decision by the majority of exhibitors not to show the film. AMC Entertainment, Regal Cinemas, and Cinemark Theatres — the three top theater chains in North America — announced they were postponing any showings of the comedy about a television host tasked by the CIA to assassinate North Korea leader Kim Jong-un. The cancellation, announced Wednesday, was a startling blow to the Hollywood studio shaken by leaks and intimidation over the last several weeks by an anonymous group calling itself Guardians of Peace.


   Sony Pictures, which distributes much of Columbia Pictures classic film library, had acquired Lorimar Studios, previously on the MGM lot in Culver City. Many in the industry saw this brazen movie lot acquisition as an expansive purchase, like vultures picking at the dead bones of a formally mighty creature. With recent e-mail revelations from the moguls who run Sony regarding negative personal opinions about President Obama and actors, such as Angelina Jolie and Leonardo DiCaprio, little capital sympathy exists from insiders in Hollywood.

   Yet, the bigger picture is clear. Sony’s announcement was met with widespread distress across Hollywood and throughout many other realms that followed on what amounted to one of the most significant hacking attacks on a corporation. With a modest budget of $40 million, The Interview was predicted to earn around $30 million in its opening weekend. Should the film not be released theatrically, Sony would also lose tens of millions in marketing costs already incurred. The Asian market had previously cancelled the release of the flick, another massive monetary blow to the movie studio.

The_Great_Dictator   Duck_Soup   Dr__Strangelove_poster

   Cinematic political satire has a long and rich tradition. French and Italian filmmakers have never shied away from such drama. Duck Soup, The Great Dictator, To Be or Not To Be, Dr. Strangelove, and Fail Safe are noteworthy examples of classic cinema that has tackled the notion about rogue-countries-doing-unsettling-things-against-an-oppressed-people.

   Our freedoms have been compromised in a startling way. Newt Gingrich tweeted:  America had lost its first battle in the war of cyber terrorism. A former senior national security official in the George W. Bush administration commented that Sony made the wrong decision. SAG Award nominee Steve Carell called it:  A sad day for creative expression. Jimmy Kimmel also surmised:  (Sony’s decision) validates terrorist actions and sets a terrifying precedent. These are not over-statements, in my estimation.

Kim_Jong-un_sketch  The truth… America’s long running military conflict remains in tact. The Korean War began in 1950, and it never really concluded. It has been seen as both a civil war and a proxy conflict in the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union. While not directly committing forces, Soviets have provided strategic planning, weapons, and material aid to North Korean and Chinese armies. The United States keeps a military presence in the area as an effort to uphold the armistice between South and North Korea.

   In the final analysis, the ultimate power of making movies remains viable on all levels of global culture and society. Let’s hope this art-form will always be a courageous way of individual expression. The Sony Pictures decision to buckle from bully threats should be the exception, not the rule.   KIM JONG-UN —–>

   I hope I never fear the opportunity to express my opinion over this or any other controversial issue.

   Just sayin’

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- What a Way to Start 2015…

December 16th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Here’s a flyer for a special nationwide screening of The Wizard of Oz, courtesy of Turner Classic Movies and Fathom Events:

Wizard of Oz screening

   What a great way to start the new year! Cut and paste the link below to obtain your tickets:



   Bess Myerson was an model and television actress. She was the first and, to date, only Jewish American to be crowned Miss America. Her attaining that title, days after the end of the Second World War, was a seminal event for Jews as an affirmation of the community’s integration into American society.

   She appeared regularly on television in the 1950s and 1960s, and was a regular on the celebrity quiz show I’ve Got a Secret. Myerson parlayed her fame into a political career, unsuccessfully running for the United States Senate, and holding high positions in the New York City government in two administrations. Her career ended in the 1980s, when she was swept up in a scandal that led to a 1988 trial in federal court on multiple charges, in which she was eventually acquitted.

   Bess Myerson (right) was 90.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Dealt the Final Hand…

December 14th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Former Topps Company executive Sy Berger, regarded as the father of the modern baseball card died early Sunday at his home in Rockville Center, NY. Berger personally signed players to baseball card contracts throughout the next few decades.

sy   topps

   A Bucknell graduate, Berger went to work for Topps before it produced baseball cards. He served in World War II, then became part of a small team that took on Bowman Gum by signing players to appear on the company’s oversized 1952 Topps set, which was designed on Berger’s kitchen table. Using scissors and cardboard at his kitchen table, Berger played around with ideas for trading cards until he struck upon a design that endured for decades: a card with team logos and simulated player autographs on the front and bios and stats on the back.

   Sy Berger was 91.


beverly bremers   Over the weekend, I attended the OC/LA MCA-I Holiday Party. Southern California media professionals engaged in an evening of fellowship, entertainment, and even karaoke. During the gift exchange and raffle portion of the festivities, my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series were given away. The winner of my literary works was songstress Beverly Bremers.

   Beverly’s career is notable. She performed on the Ted Mack Amateur Hour on her thirteenth birthday. Bremers joined the musical Hair early in its Broadway run. In 1970, she was an original cast member of The Me Nobody Knows, winning an Obie for her performance. Beverly is best known for recording the 1972 Top 20 hit single Don’t Say You Don’t Remember.

   Currently, Beverly Bremers is also a well-respected vocal coach… and a proud owner of the Forgotten Hollywood Book Series

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Guest on Circle of Insight…

December 12th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   I’ve been invited to be a guest on Circle of Insight on the Therapy Cable network. The web television program is hosted by the esteemed Carlos Vazquez, a former congressional candidate for the US House of Representatives. I’ll be waxing nostalgic about Hollywood’s Golden Age and its psychological impact on society and culture, the Great Depression, the Allied fight during World War II, and the subsequent rise of the Baby Boomer generation. The internet podcast explores psychology with a myriad of topics, such as economics, politics, religion, and more. My three-part interview can be viewed after 02/21 on therapycable.com. As stated by Carlos Vazquez on his LinkedIn website:

circle of insight   TCLogo

Founded in 2013, Circle of Insight is a research and educational institution – a think tank-whose mission is to explore the tough issues and questions and to create, develop, and distribute content that will stimulate, encourage, and facilitate serious discussion in the hope of better understanding and advancement.

The Circle’s staff pursues this mission by performing timely, accurate research on relevant and pertinent issues and providing discussions with leading experts in their field.

The guests are comprised of doctors, lawyers, politicians, scientists, and experts in their field. We believe a multidisciplinary approach is essential in finding rational, comprehensive and practical solutions.

Cut-and-paste the link below for the latest program:


   Carlos Vazquez is a financial planner specializing in retirement and behavioral finance (the psychology of investment decisions). He examines the unconscious patterns that create our views and behaviors towards money, risk, and decision making. Also, Vazquez is a Doctoral Candidate in Psychology.

   Here’s the complete lowdown about Therapy Cable:


   Just in time for the holidays, I invite you to tune in!

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Walt Disney’s Private Club…

December 9th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Due to winning a Halloween contest, my wife Laurie won an opportunity to visit to Club 33, Walt Disney’s corporate meeting place in the heart of New Orleans Square at Disneyland. On Monday, Mark and Maxime Thomas (Laurie’s brother and brother-in-law) and joined my wife for lunch at this exclusive spot. We enjoyed a sumptuous meal, talented carolers, and a visit from Terri Jo Slater, a good friend of ours, who is also an 30-year employee at the Happiest Place on Earth. We were celebrating Laurie’s and my recent birthdays; and Maxime’s recent accolade as one of Belgium’s most influential citizens for 2014, quite an accomplishment!


MANNY        LAURIE                 CLUB 33              MAXIME        MARK

    When Walt Disney was working with various corporate promoters for his attractions at the 1964–1965 New York World’s Fair, he noted the various VIP Lounges provided as an accommodation for the corporate elite. This gave him the idea that culminated in Club 33.The many stories regarding the origin of the name, two stories are the most prominent. The first and official explanation states:  Club 33 gets its name solely from its address of 33 Royal Street in New Orleans Square. A second and less well known story speculates the name honors there being 33 corporate sponsors at Disneyland in 1966-1967 when the club was being built and opened. There is a 14-year waiting list for new memberships!

   Once at the dining level, guests can view antique furniture pieces collected by Lillian Disney. The walls are adorned, in part, with butterflies pinned under glass and hand-painted animation cels from the original Fantasia film. There is a fully functional glass telephone booth just off the elevator that was used in The Happiest Millionaire and an ornate walnut table with white marble top that was used in Mary Poppins. A harpsichord features a Renaissance-style art piece that was hand-painted by Disney artists. Elton John and Paul McCartney have each played this instrument.

   The only place that allows alcohol in the theme park, the overall experience was quite a perk earned by Laurie Pacheco…


ken weatherwax   Ken Weatherwax was best known as Pugsley on The Addams Family television series. The young actor came from a theatrical family. His aunt was Ruby Keeler, memorable for her role in 42nd Street. In addition, Ken was the nephew of Rudd Weatherwax, the trainer for Lassie. Charles Addams, writer for The Addams Family, helped select Ken for the role of Pugsley. Charles felt that Ken was perfect for the part because he possessed a maniacal smile and a very strange personality. Dismissing acting as a career, Weatherwax found himself more comfortable behind-the-scenes as a grip for television shows for more than a decade, including stints on The A-Team and Full House.

   Survived by Gomez (John Astin) and Wednesday Addams (Lisa Loring), Ken Weatherwax (above) was 59.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Frank Capra For the Holidays…

December 8th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Frank Capra’s American Dreams is an eight-film retrospective that began last night, and runs into the new year, at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica, CA. No director was better able to put on screen the hopes and wishes of the common man, and the perils of confronting corporatism and political graft.

aero_marquee   Frank_Capra_in_Mr__Smith_Goes_to_Washington_(trailer)

   Born in Sicily, Frank Capra emigrated at the beginning of the twentieth century. His difficult ocean voyage to America and his lower-class childhood in East Los Angeles left indelible marks on the future filmmaker. As ambitious as he was poor, Capra became the first in his family to work his way through college. When opportunity knocked, he answered; bluffing his way into a movie studio job. Working with Mack Sennett and Harry Langdon, he established a track record for silent comedy, and that success continued into the sound era at Columbia Pictures.

   With 1934’s It Happened One Night, Capra hit the jackpot: The screwball classic was the first to sweep the top Oscar categories, taking home Best Picture, Screenplay, Actor, Actress, and Director awards (his first of three). Though Capra never abandoned comedy – he helmed such hilarious features as You Can’t Tale It with You and Arsenic and Old Lace – he increasingly used his cachet to explore serious themes, including politics (Meet John Doe, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington ) and business (It’s a Wonderful Life). Through it all, Frank Capra offered a vision of America where people were basically good and problems had solutions – a vision whose allure remains strong decades later.

   The series also includes The Bitter Tea of General Yen, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, and Lost Horizon. Three screenings of It’s a Wonderful Life are included in the schedule of the Holiday Spirit series. Actors such as Jack Carson, Claude Rains, Peter Lorre, Alan Hale Sr., Gloria Grahame, Thomas Mitchell, James Gleason, Walter Brennan, Lionel Barrymore, Eddie “Rochester” Anderson, Beulah Bondi, and Ward Bond are stars in my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series. In my next work, due out in 2015, the stories of Edward Everett Horton and Edward Arnold and will be featured. All of these supporting players worked with Frank Capra.

   The Aero Theatre is located at 1328 Montana Ave. in Santa Monica.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Afternoon with The Authors #3…

December 5th, 2014

Manny P. here…

Hollywood Heritage poster

Forgotten Hollywood cover   FINALfrontcover-sonofforgottenhol

   Come by and pick up copies of the Forgotten Hollywood Book Series… The Hollywood Heritage Museum is on Highland Ave., across the street from the Hollywood Bowl.

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A TCM Holiday Chestnut…

December 4th, 2014

Manny P. here…

   Turner Classic Movies and Fathom Events is hitting the theatres this weekend to provide a classic cinema double-bill. What makes these wonderful holiday chestnuts so delightful are character actors in the films, several of which are featured in my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series.

TCM Theatre screening

   Christmas in Connecticut co-stars Sydney Greenstreet and S. Z. Sakall, both who have chapters in Son of Forgotten Hollywood Forgotten History. In the 1938 version of A Christmas Carol, two of it’s supporting players are featured in my upcoming paperback (yet untitled) in the series… Gene Lockhart and Leo G. Carroll.

      Casablanca,_Sydney_Greenstreet S_Z_Sakall_in_Whiplash_trailer Gene_Lockhart_in_Bridal_Suite_trailer

   Click on the link to find a theatre close to you to enjoy these wonderful motion pictures:


Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- A Danish Pastry…

December 2nd, 2014

Manny P. here…640px-Solvang_California1

   I spent this past weekend in Solvang, CA to celebrate my wife Laurie’s 50th birthday. A Danish hamlet in the heart of Central California, and northeast of Santa Barbara, it’s one of the special communities that make up the Santa Ynez Valley. There is a copy of the famous Little Mermaid statue from Copenhagen, as well as, a bust of famed writer of fables… Hans Christian Andersen. We visited Nordic-style souvenir shops, and tasted wine from Paso Robles.

   In 1947, following a feature article in the Saturday Evening Post, tourists began to flock to the town. As a result of the 2004 film Sideways, which was set in the surrounding Santa Ynez Valley, the number of wine-related businesses in Solvang have increased appreciably. A noted resident is the daughter of Alfred Hitchcock. Patricia was a fine supporting actress of the 1950s, notably co-starring in the director’s cinematic classic, Strangers on a Train.

   During the holidays, Solvang is a quaint stop to put you in the mood for Christmas…



   Chaucer’s Bookshop is a lively literary store in Santa Barbara. It’s now the newest location to carry my Forgotten Hollywood Book Series. Though they decided to carry my work on Cyber Monday, my visit to this popular spot reminded me that the feel and smell of an actual book is part of the fun of reading. Since becoming an author, I have always supported the foundational idea of the independent book store.

   Chaucer’s Bookshop is located 3321 State St. in the heart of this seaside community.

Until next time>                               “never forget”