“Forgotten Hollywood”- Heaven is Calling, Heaven is Calling…

June 30th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`Alan Arkin was one of the all-time great character actors and his career spanned over seven decades. His body of work included many memorable performances, notably in The Russians are Coming The Russians are Coming, Wait Until Dark, Catch-22The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Glengarry Glen Ross, Argo, and his award-winning turn in Little Miss Sunshine. He also was recently fabulous in The Komisky Method, co-starring on the small screen with Michael Douglas.

“`His parents moved to Los Angeles, when Alan was a pre-teen. An eight-month Hollywood strike cost his dad his job as a set designer. During the 1950s Red Scare, his parents were named as Communists. His father was fired when refusing to answer questions about his political ideology. David Arkin challenged the dismissal, but he was vindicated only after his death.

“`Alan Arkin was an early member of the Second City comedy troupe in the 1960s. He starred in 1963 on Broadway in Joseph Stein’s, Enter Laughing. For this performance, Arkin received the Tony Award and a Theatre World Award. Shortly after, Hollywood came calling.

“`Over the years, he bounced back-and-forth between cinema and television.  He also found time to direct productions on Broadway, including his award-winning effort of The Sunshine Boys. On television, he appeared on Sesame Street, The Muppet Show, St. ElsewhereChicago Hope (with son, Adam) and Will and Grace.  His parts on the big screen included Inspector Clouseau, Last of the Red Hot Lovers, Freebie and the Bean, Rafferty and the Gold Dust Twins, Edward Scissorhands, Havana, Grosse Pointe Blank and Going in Style.

“`Upon winning his Oscar for his work in Little Miss Sunshine, Arkin said:

“More than anything, I’m deeply moved by the open-hearted appreciation our small film has received, which in these fragmented times speaks so openly of the possibility of innocence, growth and connection.”

“`Alan Arkin was eighty-nine.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Television and Cinema at Odds…

June 25th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`The 1950s were a tumultuous time in media.  Movie studios and television were at odds and it did not look good for the small screen. John Coleman, Art Kirsch and I offer the reasons why television found a way to success… Baseball… Politics… International news… and I Love Lucy. All on Celebrating Act 2.


Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Invasion of the Cable Snatchers…

June 24th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`Like all science fiction classics of the 1950s, mad scientists are tinkering with our cable box in some sort of mind-control game, leaving a metaphoric nuclear waste in its wake. The monsters emerge promising a bright future. The ending credits appear and so does a huge question mark. When the curtain drops, the audience is uneasy about a sequel.

“`It starts innocently enough. Like Klaatu, the fictional humanoid alien in The Day the Earth Stood Still, David Zazlav  (head of WB Discovery) promises sunshine, lollipops and rainbows from the parent company. But, an influx of dramatic prose is needed to justify an unsettling sixty-minute production. In this screenplay, it starts with the loss of extras dressed as talking heads and corporate hacks at CNN. Like actors in red uniforms at the start of each Star Trek episode, they are vaporized in some ghoulish way… And then, the opening credits:  “Space, the final frontier…”

“`Meanwhile, back at TCM, folks notice changes as people and programs start to disappear. A Friday-evening underground show vanishes without a trace; their host squirted from the earth like a watermelon seed. Dispatched characters from the margins of society eerily resemble an old man who first discovers the Blob, a trailer park family invaded by Them!, or a gentle sailor attacked by Killer Shrews.  One of the stars has his popular show repeatedly pre-empted, the villain hoping the citizenry will not notice the interruption of Eddie Muller’s film noir Saturdays. But, they do notice!

“`A mushroom-like crowd hovers over this years film festival, but its patrons are assured that all is well in their community. Yet, every fan suddenly feels like they may be part of recipes in an upcoming TCM cookbook (as part of a Wine-Club promotion). It really does not matter that annual get-togethers have risen in astronomic popularity, despite the pandemic (which may or may not have set off this corporate sickness about to envelop the global hamlet).

“`And then it happens on a bright June day, havoc ensues! The team, who has cultivated and curated a co-mingling of film stars and fans to ensure an incredible loyal base of viewers, are dispatched. Programmers, coordinators, media intermediaries and others, disemboweled; and a stunned fan-base suddenly has a zombified look resembling the Children of the Damned. Someone has to assume the roles formerly played by Richard Carleson and Richard Denning. Dave Karger and Eddie Muller express absolute disgust over the tragic decision. The citizenry take to social media and writing letters to the editor to protest.

“`As in most of science fiction classic of the day, familiar faces emerge in cameos. In Them!, classic moments from Fess Parker, Leonard Nimoy, and William Schallert.  In our melodrama, Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Ryan Reynolds and Paul Thomas Anderson present a case to the villain and emerge like former British Minister Neville Chamberlain with declarations of “peace for our time.” All while Sudetenland of former Czechoslovakia is annexed by Germany. Put another way… Rome is burning and Zazlav is fiddling; a fiend with a face!

“`There is the obligatory catyclismic global implications (presented before the flick’s ultimate conclusion), with stock footage from the inner sanctum of RKOs film library, including floods and volcanic eruptions. In this production, newspaper headlines spell out the demise of TCM-Movies UK. Its last day to air is on July 6th. And WB Discovery is reportedly looking to sell off half of its film and television music catalog. As Allen Ludden use to say on a popular game show: The password is… LIQUIDATION!

“`Our initial glimps of the so-called new and improved TCM (besides upcoming programming) will be during this Fall’s TCM Classic Cruise. It might be a prudent idea for Chairman Zavlav to avoid being on the passanger list. In the meantime, let me offer best wishes to Charlie Tabesh, Pola Changnon and the rest of our comrades who have fallen.  They are off to opportunities of merit, one hopes. This story is not done. Cue the end credits and requisite question marks.  ???

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- Labor Party Oscar Winner…

June 15th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`Glenda Jackson CBE was an two-time Oscar-winning British actress and politician. She was appointed CBE by Queen Elizabeth II in 1978. Jackson temporarily retired from acting in 1991 in order to devote her efforts to politics full-time as the prospective parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Highgate.  After her quarter of a century absence from performing, she returned to Broadway.  GLENDA JACKSON –>

“`After winning a scholarship, Jackson studied at Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in 1954. Despite unsuccessfully earning a spot for the Royal Shakespeare Company, she made her cinematic debut in This Sporting Life The theatre group eventually reconsidered and invited her to become a member.

“`Her sublime effort in Ken Russell’s motion picture adaptation of D. H. Lawrence’s Women in Love led to her first Academy Award for Best Actress. She followed with a second Oscar a few years later for her performance in A Touch of Class. Her career included memorable roles in Sunday Bloody Sunday, Mary Queen of Scots, House Calls, Hedda and Hopscotch.

“`In memory of her passing, the BBC broadcast This Cultural Life, her interview with John Wilson first shown in October, 2022.  It was followed by her Emmy-winning turn in the 2019 drama Elizabeth is Missing.

“`Glenda Jackson was eighty-seven.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood”- 21st Century Film Classics…

June 14th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`Art Kirsch, John Coleman and I have a super treat for you on Celebrating Act 2. I pull out my crystal ball and predict five future classics in cinema from a pool that encompasses over the last twenty-three years. These are (dare I say) forgotten hollywood sensations!


Until next time>                               “never forget”

“Forgotten Hollywood – Kelly J. Kitchens: TCM Fan Deluxe…

June 9th, 2023

Manny P. here…

“`The TCM Classic Film Festival is a fine celebration of Hollywood’s Golden Age (and beyond), movie stars and historic locales. But clearly, it is so much more. Fans from all over the globe annually converge to enjoy motion pictures the way they were meant to be seen, to walk red carpets and witness hand-in-cement ceremonies with iconic actors and filmmakers and most importantly, to join in fellowship with like-minded people that appreciate the art of motion on screen.

“` Few fans create more of a difference with regards to bringing together these passionate film-goers than Kelly J. Kitchens.  The owner of a Media Relations / Entertainment Publicity company and a Film Publicist based in Dallas, Texas, Kelly has mobilized a movie fest contingent in a way that is very impressive. Her administration of the Facebook page: Going to TCM Classic Film Festival has thousands of followers and the number is rapidly growing; impressive by any social media metric. KELLY J. KITCHENS ->

“`Since 2010, her group meets the day prior to the start of the festival. They have outgrown their original location, poolside at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, and they now begin the trek in the parking lot of the Hollywood Heritage Museum. Along the way, actors (such as Barbara Rush and Cora Sue Collins) and authors have offered oral presentations and mingled with appreciative members of the group. She was even approached by the legendary Robert Osborne because of outfits they wore while attending the TCM fest red-carpet screening of A Star is Born (1954). No one should be surprised by Kitchens’ success.

“`Kelly’s cinematic appreciation begin early in life with an annual screening of The Wizard of Oz on television.  Her zeal for the flick included cassette taped copies of the audio, so she could memorize every second of the film. During allowed television time at home, Kitchens would watch  Our Gang / Little Rascals comedies and Abbott and Costello. She discovered a theatre that featured classic film matinees and this opened her world to the magic of big screen classics,  such as The Sound of Music and Astaire / Rogers musicals. Yearbook photo of Kelly with her Wizard of Oz collection ->

“`While in high school, Kelly was depressed over a family illness. Her English teacher well-versed in her student’s love of classic movies, assigned her to watch the screwball comedy Bringing Up Baby. Kitchens credits her teacher to this day for showing such empathy and compassion, which helped her through a clearly difficult time in her life. And her job on the yearbook staff gave the young journalist a clear path towards her eventual career journey. Kelly’s Facebook page clearly has elements of a reunion of like-minded individuals. And she remains satified with that metaphoric approach.




“`Kelly met her husband (Mark Wickersham) at a film festival.  Together, they map out movie festival-themed vacations and they are planning to attend the upcoming inaugural Library of Congress Festival of Film and Sound. Sharing a mutual love for movies, the couple embodies the theme of the Facebook page members. I am thrilled to join other film historians, including Kari Bible and Marc Wanamaker, to be part of this loyal, fun and caring group.  Look for me in the latest reunion photo taken in April (part of the TCM yearbook class of 2023).

“`If you are searching for a career publicist, you can contact our subject at Kelly J. Kitchens Media Relations / Entertainment Publicy at kelly@kellykitchenspr.com. You will find a clearly dedicated and innovative advocate for your project or your career. The Going to TCM Classic Film Festival page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/112530958827676/media/albums. If you join and attend next year’s fest, you will be enveloped by thousands of amazing friends you never knew you had. And search out Kelly J. Kitchens… her hoopla is fabulous!

Until next time>                               “never forget”