Tuesday, August 31, 2010

RIP Ian McDougall

Canadian production exec Ian McDougall, former head of production at Alliance-Atlantis, died of heart failure Aug. 24 in Pennsylvania. He was 65.

McDougall began his career in professional theater in England. He went on to become deputy director and head of English language production for the Canadian Film Development Corporation (now Telefilm Canada) from 1980 to 1982, and supervised some 150 feature films and television programs across Canada.

From 1982 to 1996 he was a freelance producer and worked on shows like "Anne Of Green Gables," "Passion & Paradise," "Johnny Mnemonic" and "Clearcut."

McDougall served as Sr. VP of production for Alliance-Atlantis from 1996 to 2003, overseeing production on such shows as "CSI," "Joan Of Arc," "Nuremberg" and "Life With Judy Garland."

He had just completed producing the first season of the new crime drama "Shattered" for Entertainment One and CanWest Global.

He is survived by his wife, Karen Laurence, and two daughters.

Donations may be made to Doctors Without Borders.


McDOUGALL, Ian
Born: 5/2/1945
Died: 8/24/2010, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.

Ian McDougalls' western - executive producer:
Clearcut - 1991

Monday, August 30, 2010

RIP Ron Gans (aka Ron Kennedy)

RONALD GANS
Actor frequently did film, TV voice work

Ronald Gans, 78, an actor whose voice was frequently used in movies and television, died June 29 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center from complications of pneumonia, said his wife, Theresa.

Gans acted and did voice work on "Lost in Space" in 1966-67 and appeared on such series as "It Takes a Thief" in 1968, "Quincy, M.E." in 1977 and "Star Trek: The Next Generation" in 1988.

His voice work included the television series "Welcome to Pooh Corner," "Dumbo's Circus" and "The Transformers."

Movie roles included "Tarzan and the Jungle Boy" in 1968 and "Runaway, Runaway" in 1971.

Ronald Kenneth Gans was born Aug. 9, 1931, in Chicago and his family moved to California when he was 14. He graduated from Beverly Hills High School and attended USC before serving in the Navy, his wife said. He started acting after leaving the service.

Gans' voice also could be heard on commercials and promos for television shows and movies, his wife said.


GANS, Ron (aka Ron Kennedy) (Ronald Kenneth Gans)
Born: 8/9/1931, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
Died: 6/29/2010, Los Angles, California, U.S.A.

Ron Gans westerns – actor:
The Moonlighter – 1953
Hidden Guns – 1956 (Burt Miller)
The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (TV) 1957 (Sgt. Kennedy)
Shotgun Slade (TV) – 1961 (henchman)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

RIP Ary Fernandes

Brazilian filmmaker Ary Fernandes died on Sunday morning

Ary Fernandes died on Sunday morning August 29. The filmmaker, writer, actor and producer gained fame in the late '50s when he launched the series Vigilante Road.
Ary's body will be veiled from 19h Crying Boy in the cemetery, located in the district of Santana in São Paulo. The funeral is scheduled to take place at 11am on Monday the 30th.

After several jobs in television and film, Ary eventually dropped out of the profession in the 1980s. Since 2005 he has been facing health problems after suffering a stroke.

He was hospitalized on Saturday night with severe pains in the stomach and suffered four cardiac arrests in the period he was in hospital and died on Sunday morning.
He was married to Ines Peixoto Fernandes since January 18, 1958, with whom he had two sons, Fernando and Vanya.


FERNANDES, Ary
Born: 3/31/1931, Santana, São Paulo, Brazil
Died: 8/29/2010, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil

Ary Fernandes' westerns - production manager, supervising producer, executive producer:
Paixão de Gaúcho - 1957 [production manager]
Trindade... é Meu Nome - 1973 [executive producer]
O Cangaceiro - 1997 [supervising producer]

Thursday, August 26, 2010

RIP Edward O. Denault


Denault was head of production at CBS, Lorimar TV
TV vet worked on 'Gunsmoke,' 'Waltons,'
By VARIETY STAFF

Edward O. Denault, who was head of production at CBS and later VP of production at Lorimar Television, died Aug. 21 in Mission Viejo, Calif., of heart failure. He was 86.
Showbiz vet Denault joined Lorimar Productions at its inception and aided in launching the likes of "The Waltons," "Eight Is Enough," "Dallas," "Falcon Crest" and "Knots Landing."

Denault was a flight instructor at Santa Monica Airport who was recruited as an assistant director by thesp Brian Donleavy in 1951. He assisted on many westerns including "The Rifleman" and "Wanted Dead or Alive." Soon Denault was directing Rod Serling in the intros and wrap-ups to "The Twilight Zone" as well as a few episodes.

In 1967, Denault segued to production manager and eventually VP in charge of production for CBS on the West Coast. He managed such shows as "Hawaii Five-O," "Wild Wild West," "Gunsmoke," "Big Valley" and "Gilligan's Island" before being recruited by the fledgling Lorimar, from where he retired in 1988 after nearly 40 years in showbiz.

Other credits include "Perfect Strangers," "Dallas,".

Denault won a Directors Guild of America award for "The Dick Powell Theater" in 1963.

Survivors include a son, two grandsons and two granddaughters.

Donations may be made in his name to the Alzheimers Assn. at alz.org.


DENAULT, Edward O.
Born: 1924, U.S.A.
Died: 8/21/2010, Mission Viejo, California, U.S.A.

Edward O. Denault's western - production manager, director, assistant director:
Yancy Derringer (TV) - 1958-1959 [director, assistant director]
Johnny Ringo (TV) - 1960 [assistant director]
The Westerner (TV) - 1960 [assistant director]
The Rifleman (TV) - 1960 [assistant director]
Wanted: Dead or Alive (TV) - 1960-1961 [assistant director]
Zane Grey Theater (TV) - 1961 [assistant director]
The Wild Wild West (TV) - 1967 [production manager]
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1969 [production manager]

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

RIP Jackson Gillis

Prolific TV scribe Gillis dies
He wrote for Mickey Mouse Club, 'Superman,' 'Columbo'
By VARIETY STAFF

Scribe Jackson Gillis, known to Disney fans for his work on "The
Adventures of Spin and Marty" and "Hardy Boys" serials for the Mickey
Mouse Club, died Aug. 19 in Moscow, Idaho, of pneumonia. He was 93.

Gillis had a long and extensive career as a writer, starting in radio
for such shows as "The Whistler," "Let George Do It," and "The Hedda
Hopper Show." He also performed on stage in London's Westminster
Theater and then in Virginia's Barter Theater.

The Stanford U. grad served as an Army intelligence officer in the
Pacific Theater during World War II. Returning to Hollywood, he
resumed writing for radio on such shows as "Let George Do It."

He segued to television, starting with 1952's "Racket Squad,"and wrote
for such iconic shows as "Superman" "Lassie," "Perry Mason" and "The
Fugitive." A prolific writer, he also wrote episodes of "Mission:
Impossible," "Bonanza," "Knight Rider" and "Murder, She Wrote" as well
as "Lost in Space," "Hawaii Five-0" and "Wonder Woman." He wrote the
teleplay "A Stoning in Fulham County."

Gillis was nominated for an Emmy in 1971 for "Columbo," a series for
which he was a frequent contributor.

He was also the author of two detective novels, "The Killers of
Starfish" and "Chain Saw." Gillis retired from the biz in 1996, and he
and his wife, actress Patricia Cassidy moved to Moscow.

Cassidy preceded him in death. Survivors include a daughter, a
grandson and a brother.

Donations may be made to the American Cancer Society in his name.


GILLIS, Jackson
Born: 8/21/1916, Kalama, Washington, U.S.A.
Died: 8/19/2010, Moscow, Idaho, U.S.A.

Jackson Gillis' westerns - screenwriter:
The Adventures of Spin and Marty (TV) - 1955
Zorro (TV) - 1957
Sugarfoot (TV) - 1958
Bronco (TV) - 1959
The Wild Wild West (TV) - 1966, 1968
Bonanza (TV) - 1969
The Chisolms (TV) - 1980

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

RIP Ahna Capri

Actress Ahna Capri dies
Played sexy secretary in 'Enter the Dragon'

By Alex Ben Block

Aug 24, 2010, 07:29 PM ET

Ahna Capri, who began as a child actress in the 1950s and had a career as a sexy starlet through the 1970s, died on August 19 at age 65 from injuries sustained in an automobile accident in Los Angeles.

The beautiful blonde was probably best known for her role as Tania, the secretary of Han, the villain in the 1974 global hit "Enter The Dragon," which starred Bruce Lee.

Born Anna Marie Nanasi on July 6, 1944 in Budapest, Hungary, she began appearing on American television as Anna Capri at age 11 on series such as "The Danny Thomas Show" and "Father Knows Best."

She made her big screen debut at age 13 in the United Artist production "Outlaw's Son," and continued working on such TV shows as "Police Story," "Cannon," "Mannix," "Ironside," "Adam-12," "The Mod Squad," "The Invaders," "The Wild, Wild West," "I Spy," "The Man from U.N.C.L.E.," "Branded," "Leave It to Beaver," and "Maverick."

In the 1970s she changed the spelling of her first name to Ahna because she said too many people mispronounced it.

Her memorable film roles, besides "Enter The Dragon," included being the fed-up girlfriend of a country singer in "Payday" (1973); the horror movie "The Brotherhood of Satan" (1971); a feisty wildlife photographer in "Piranha" (1972); and an assassin in the low budget "The Specialist" (1975). She made her last film in 1979.

A longtime resident of the San Fernando Valley, she never married.

Her death was the result of an auto accident in North Hollywood on August 9, in which a 5-ton truck driven by a 22-year-old female driver collided with her car. She was in a coma on life support for 11 days, and passed away with family members at her side.

She is survived by her sister Rose. Plans for a memorial service are pending.


CAPRI, Ahna (Anna Marie Nanasi)
Born: 7/6/1944, Budapest, Hungary
Died: 8/9/2010, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Ahna Capri's westerns – actress:
The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin (TV) – 1957 (Penelope Chastworth)
Outlaws Son 1957 (Amy Wentworth as a child)
Circus Boy (TV) – 1957 (Irma Cody)
Sugarfoot (TV) – 1958 (Willie Ann Miles)
Buckskin (TV) – 1958 (Sara)
Trackdown (TV) – 1959 (Debby McCallin)
Wanted: Dead or Alive - 1959 (TV) (Dolly Cleary)
Maverick (TV) – 1960 (school child)
Cheyenne (TV) – 1961 (Mary Randall)
Bronco (TV) 1962 (Emily as a child)
Branded (TV) – 1965 (Robin Shields)
Lasredo (TV) – 1966 (Sally Fletcher)
The Monroes (TV) – 1967 (Polly Deaver)
The Wild Wild West (TV) – 1967 (Abigail Moss)
The Iron Horse (TV) – 1967 (Angie)
The Guns of Will Sonnett (TV) – 1968 (Laurie)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

RIP Tiberio Murgia

Sardinian actor Tiberio Murgia died on Friday August 20 in a nursing home in Tolfa, Italy. He had been ill for the last several months and passed away yesterday from Alzheimer's. Murgia was born on February 5, 1929 in Oristano, Sardinia, Italy into a poor family. For twenty years he peddled the Italian Communist newspaper 'Unity' and became the secretary of the Young Communist League. He then went to Marcinelle, Belgium and worked in a coal mine that had hired thousands of Italians. After an explosion in the mine he returned to Italy and worked in Rome as a dishwasher in a restaurant called 'The King of Friends' where he was discovered by assistant director Mario Monicelli. Tiberio auditioned for a part and was given a role as a Sicilian in an Italian comedy “I soli ignoti” (1958). Murgia remained faithful to this stereotypical character in most of his films, TV and commercials for the next 40 years.


MURGIA, Tiberio
Born: 2/5/1929, Oristano, Sardinia, Italy
Died: 8/20/2010, Tolfa, Lazio, Italy

Tiberio Murgia's westerns - actor:
The Terror of Oklahoma – 1959 (cowboy)
Rick and John Conquerors of the West – 1967 (Vincenzo)
Judge Roy Bean – 1971 (Post Mortem)

RIP Rina Franchetti



Italian actress Rina Franchetti died at her home in Formello, Italy on August 18. She was 102. Born Ester Girgenti on December 23, 1907 in Naples, Italy. She was one of the most respected actresses of the Italian stage. Rina's first film was “Due cuori felici” in 1932. Her last film was 1990's “Basta! Adesso tocca a noi”. Between then she appeared on stage, radio, and TV signing a contract with RAI, and later when her career was in decline she did voice dubbing and narration for radio dramas. Her daughter actress Sara Franchetti was born in 1946.


FRANCHETTI, Rina (Ester Girgenti)
Born: 12/23/1907, Naples, Compania, Italy
Died: 8/18/2010, Formello, Lazio, Italy

Rina Franchetti's westerns - actress:
The Brute and the Beast - 1966 (Mercedes)
Two Guns for a Coward - 1968

RIP Gloria Winters


Gloria Winters, Perky Star of Wholesome 'Sky King', Dies
By ANITA GATES

Gloria Winters, who personified youthful, clean-cut American innocence
in the 1950s children's television series "Sky King," died on Aug. 14 at
her home in Vista, Calif., just north of San Diego. She was in her late
70s.

The cause was complications of pneumonia, her family told The Los
Angeles Times.

"Sky King" was a contemporary western about an Arizona rancher and
pilot, the title character, who ran into the likes of jewel smugglers,
bank robbers and gangsters. Ms. Winters played Sky's blond, baby-faced,
perky but earnest and unfailingly helpful teenage niece, Penny, who
often became involved in the adventures.

She played the role in 72 episodes from 1952 to 1959. (Kirby Grant, who
played Sky King, died in 1985.)

Although she retired from show business after "Sky King" went off the
air, during its run Ms. Winters also did guest acting roles in numerous
1950s series, including "Richard Diamond, Private Detective," "Racket
Squad" and "Death Valley Days." She had made her credited television
debut as Babs, the dreamy-eyed teenage daughter, in the first season
(1949-50) of the working-class sitcom "The Life of Riley," when Jackie
Gleason played Riley. William Bendix played the role in later seasons.

Ms. Winters was born in Los Angeles on Nov. 28 - sources disagree on
whether the year was 1931 or 1932 - and began acting as a child. She
found love through her most famous role, marrying Dean Vernon, a sound
engineer on "Sky King." He died in 2001.

Some five years after the series ended, Ms. Winters wrote an etiquette
book for young girls, "Penny's Guide to Teenage Charm and Personality."
That book led to a more recent claim to fame.

In the mid-1990s the alternative rock group Nada Surf used text from the
book for its song and video "Popular." Along with advice on breaking up
with a boy (if you are straightforward, he'll "respect you for your
frankness"), Ms. Winters declared, "Being attractive is the most
important thing there is."


WINTERS, Gloria
Born: 11/28/1932, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 8/14/2010, Vista, California, U.S.A.

Gloria Winter's westerns – actress:
El Paso – 1949 (Francine Maylon)
The Lone Ranger (TV) – 1950 (Bonnie Dexter)
Stagecoach Driver – 1951 (Sue Cassidy)
The Gene Autry Show (TV) – 1951 (Sue Miller)
The Range Rider (TV) – 1951, 1952 (Nicky Ann Brown, Sally Roberts, Linda Tyler, Jerry Harris)
The Roy Rogers Show (TV) – 1952 (Laraine Dunlap)
Sky King (TV) – 1952-1955 (Penny King)
The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok (TV) – 1953 (Coralee Bradley)
Death Valley Days (TV) – 1953 (Millie Stewart)
Stories of the Century (TV) – 1954 (Little Britches)
Brave Eagle (TV) – 1955 (Lieutenant's fiance)
Judge Roy Bean (TV) – 1956 (Beth)
Sheriff of Cochise (TV) – 1957 (Nancy)
Frontier Doctor (TV) – 1959 (waitress)
The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (TV) – 1960 (Ruthie Jensen)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

RIP Kenny Endoso

Kenneth Endoso
Actor/Stuntman
Husband/Father/Grandfather/Friend

Born in Hilo, Hawaii July 22, 1940.

After courageously battling cancer more than 6 years, Kenny peacefully passed on to his eternal life August 10, 2010 surrounded by his loving family.

Kenny had an amazing life. He grew up in a small town on the Big Island of Hawaii and went on to become an award winning stuntman in Hollywood. He appeared in hundreds of action packed movies & tv shows, including F Troop, Hawaii 5-0, Magnum P.I., Airwolf, Kung Fu, Spider Man & so many others. Features include Twilight Zone, Die Hard, Lethal Weapon, Collateral, Big Trouble in Little China, Diamonds Are Forever, Blues Brothers, The Stuntman, Enemy of the State, Déjà vu, and most recently Green Hornet. Always portraying the "bad guy" but in truth a gentle giant.

He took pride in coaching his son's baseball teams & Indian Princess/Charity League activities with his daughter. He loved classic cars & owned many during the years; his favorite a red '67 Camarillo. Sometimes known as The Big Kahuna, Kenny had a fun loving sense of humor and genuine understanding and acceptance of different cultures. As a proud member of Stunts Unlimited, DGA and owner of Stuntman Productions, he was always willing to help young stunt players perfect their craft. He was fortunate to travel around the world on location and family holidays, savoring so many incredible life experiences, among his favorites golfing at Pebble Beach, Oakland Hills and his beloved Lakeside Golf Course.

Kenny will be forever missed by Laureen, his wife & sweetheart of 44 years, children, Kathy, Carlisa & Michael (Nicolle), grandchildren, Nick, Kristin, JJ & baby Lilah, sisters Pearl & Shirley, brother George, Mum-in-law Joan, numerous nieces & nephews, plus an incredible network of loving family members and friends who have encouraged his spirit & courage through his journey.

A Celebration of Kenny's Life will be held Sunday, August 22nd, 2010 at 12:30 pm
Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills, Church of the Hills


ENDOSO, Kenny (Kenneth Gordon Endoso)
Born: 7/22/1940, Hilo, Hawaii
Died: 8/10/2010, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Kenny Endoso's westerns - actor, stuntman:
Daniel Boone (TV) - 1968 (Tuscola, Black Fox)
The Great Bank Robbery - 1969 (Chinese landryman), [stuntman]
Kung Fu (TV) - 1973 (henchman)
Blazing Saddles - 1974 (Mexican) [stuntman]
Gone With the West - 1975 (Mimmo's man)
The Electric Horseman - 1979 [stuntman]
Windwalker - 1981 [stuntman]

Monday, August 16, 2010

RIP Bernie Abramson

Bernie Abramson was born in Los Angeles, California, and started his photography in junior high school. He joined the United States Navy in 1942 as an aerial cameraman and was the first photographer to photograph the Japanese fleet at the island of Palau. His aerial photos resulted in the sinking of in excess of 50 ships and the destruction of 150 of their aircraft for which he received numerous decorations. His plane was shot down in 1945 and he spent 2 1/2 days in the water before being rescued by the USS Bowers. After being released from a Naval hospital and at the end of the war, Abramson resumed his photographic activities as a photographer in the motion picture industry. Among the productions to his credit as a photographer are to name a few”The Alamo”, “West Side Story”, “Dirty Harry”, “The War Wagon”, “Cleopatra”, “Oceans Eleven”, “Sergeants Three”, “Donovan's Reef”, “The Wild Bunch”, and “Some Like It Hot”. It was on the production of "Oceans 11" that Bernie became the favorite of the "Rat Pack" and was always invited (with cameras) to the private functions. In 1977 Bernie gave up still photography and became a Director of Photography and his first credit as a Director of Photography was “Up the Sandbox” (1972) with Barbra Streisand.


ABRAMSON, Bernie (Bernard Abramson)
Born: 11/3/1923, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 8/14/2010, Newhall, California, U.S.A.

Bernie Abramson's westerns - still photographer, cinematographer:
The Alamo - 1960 [still photographer]
Sergeants 3 - 1962 [still photographer]
The Glory Guys - 1965 [still photographer]
The War Wagon - 1967 [still photographer]
The Wild Bunch - 1969 [still photographer]
The Great Bank Robbery - 1969 [still photographer]
There Was a Crooked Man - 1970 [still photographer]
Flap - 1970 [cinematographer]
Against a Crooked Sky - 1975 [cinematographer]
Pony Express Rider - 1976 [cinematographer]
Baker's Hawk - 1976 [cinematographer]
Ghost Rock - 2004 [cinematographer]

Friday, August 13, 2010

RIP: Paul Rudd

RUDD--Paul Ryan, 70, passed away on August 12, 2010 at his home in Greenwich, CT, of pancreatic cancer. Mr. Rudd was surrounded by, and is survived by his wife Martha Bannerman and their children, Graeme, Kathryn and Eliza. He is also survived by his mother Kathryn Rudd of Hingham, MA and numerous cousins. Mr. Rudd was born in 1940 in Boston, MA and attended the Boston Latin School and Assumption Prep. He graduated from Fairfield University. After a brief career in advertising in New York City, Mr. Rudd worked as a professional actor and director both on and off-Broadway from 1967 through 1986. Notable roles include Henry V in Henry V at the Delacorte Theater, Scooper in the original Broadway cast of Bosoms and Neglect, Romeo in Romeo and Juliet at Circle In The Square, Gentleman Caller in the original Broadway cast of The Glass Menagerie, and Billy Wilson in the premiere of David Rabe's Streamers. His television and film credits include Brian Mallory in Beacon Hill, JFK in Johnny We Hardly Knew Ye, and guest roles in episodes of Moonlighting, Knot's Landing, Hart to Hart, and Murder, She Wrote. In 1986 Mr. Rudd left acting to raise his children. As they grew, he began teaching theater, especially Shakespeare, and poetry in local middle schools and high schools. He continued his teaching career at Sarah Lawrence College (1999-2006) and the New School for Drama (2004-present) as a teaching faculty member and the Associate Director of the MFA Drama program. His passion and enthusiasm as a teacher inspired deep admiration and affection in his many students. Mr. Rudd's keen intellect, irreverent sense of humor, and vivacity were present in all facets of his life. He delighted in music, literature, art, cooking, and the company of his friends. His greatest joy was that of being a father and a husband. A service will be held this Sunday, August 15th at 2pm at Round Hill Community Church in Greenwich, CT.


RUDD, Paul Ryan
Born: 5/15/1940, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Died: 8/12/2010, Greenwich, Connecticut, U.S.A.

Paul Rudd's western - actor:
Kung Fu: The Movie (TV) - 1986 (Reverend Lawrence Perkins)

RIP Richie Hayward

Richie Hayward of Little Feat Dies Aged 64
by Paul Cashmere - August 13 2010
Under Cover Music
photo by littlefeat.net

Little Feat drummer Richie Hayward has passed away at the age of 64
after suffering from liver cancer.

Hayward was a founding member of Little Feat. As well as being a
drummer he was also a part-time actor and had a small role in the 60s
TV comedy F Troop.

He was also a popular session musician, featuring on records for Eric
Clapton, Ry Cooder, The Doobie Brothers, Robert Palmer, Warren Zeveon,
Tom Waits, Robert Plant and Bob Seger over the years.

Hayward announced in August 2009 that he was suffering from liver
cancer. He told fans through the Little Feat website. “I have very
recently been diagnosed with a severe liver disease,” he wrote. “I am
looking at testing and treatments and a possible transplant, as well
as an indefinite amount of time off”.

“I was trying to withhold this information until I could play my last
three shows and give you all I could without distraction. (My last
show will be August 7th [2009] in Montana).”

“Because I have no insurance, my friends here in Canada, where I live
with my wife, wanted to help as soon as possible and launched
information about a fundraiser and my situation, to bring in much
needed funds asap. As it is a relatively small and local event, we
were not expecting it to be noticed, and word got out before I was
prepared to make this announcement”.

“Now that it has, please know that in no way did I mean to leave you
out of the loop”.

“My intent is to come back to the band, as soon as I am physically
able. Your love and support will mean a lot to me, more than I can
say. I love and will miss you all, and I will see you again on the
proud highway”.

Richie Hayward died on Thursday, August 12, 2010.


HAYWARD, Richie
Born: 2/6/1946, Clear Lake, Iowa, U.S.A.
Died: 8/12/2010, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

Richie Hayward's western - actor, musician:
F Troop (TV) 1967 (Bedbugs' drummer)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

RIP Chris Dedrick

Musician Chris Dedrick dies at 62
Led Free Design, composer for TV and film
By CHRISTOPHER MORRIS
Variety


Chris Dedrick, who led the cult pop vocal unit the Free Design before moving on to a successful career composing for film and TV in Canada, died Aug. 6 in Toronto, according to his Web site. He was 62. No cause of death was given.
Born in Delevan, N.Y., Dedrick grew up in a musical family; his father Art was a trombonist and arranger for Vaughn Monroe's big band, and his mother was a music teacher. He sang with his brother Bruce and sister Sandy from childhood. The siblings formed the Free Design in New York's Greenwich Village in 1966.

The group - later expanded with the addition of sister Ellen -- was signed by producer-bandleader-engineer Enoch Light's audiophile label Project 3, and released six soft-pop albums distinguished by intricate vocal and orchestral arrangements between 1967 and 1971. An album for the Ambrotype label followed in 1972.

The Free Design never attained success in their day, but they were later embraced as an influence by avant-rock acts like Beck, Stereolab and the High Llamas, while Cornelius and the Pizzicato Five popularized the group's music in Japan during the '90s. A reunion album, "Cosmic Peekaboo," was issued in Germany in 2001. The act's catalog was reissued in 2003 by U.S. indie Light in the Attic Records.

After moving to Toronto in 1972, Dedrick became a busy writer for pics and TV. His score for Guy Maddin's "The Saddest Music in the World" received a Genie Award in 2004, and he won four Gemini Awards and captured 16 nominations for his TV work.

He also performed with his sisters in the classically oriented Star-Scape Singers in the '70s and '80s, and released the solo album "Wishes" in 2005.


DEDRICK, Chris
Born: 9/12/1947, Delevan, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 8/6/2010, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Chris Dedrick's western - orchestrator:
Wagons East - 1994
Streets of Laredo (TV) - 1995
Lyddie (TV) - 1996

RIP George DiCenzo

George Ralph DiCenzo (April 21, 1940 - August 9, 2010) was an American character actor and one-time associate producer for Dark Shadows. DiCenzo was in show business for more than 30 years, with extensive film, TV, stage and commercial credits.

George appeared in over 30 feature films, including Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Back to the Future, and About Last Night.... He stated that one of his favorite roles was when he starred in Helter-Skelter, where he played Vincent Bugliosi, the prosecutor in the Charles Manson mass murder trial. DiCenzo also appeared in Hotel directed by Mike Figgis with an all-star cast, and Tempted, directed by Bill Bennett and starring Burt Reynolds and Saffron Burrows. He recently played the late baseball commissioner, A. Bartlett Giamatti, in the ESPN made for TV movie Hustle, about disgraced baseball great Pete Rose.

George guest-starred in a wide variety of TV shows, including regular appearances on Murder, She Wrote and NYPD Blue. His own series included Equal Justice and Joe's Life in the early and mid-1990s. He appeared as a guest star in the Law & Order: Criminal Intent episode "Semi-Professional".

In the early 1990s, George appeared on Broadway with Nathan Lane in On Borrowed Time directed by his late friend George C. Scott.

George's voice can be heard on many commercials, books on tape, and cartoon series. Notable in regards to the third is his work for Filmation; his roles include the title character in BlackStar, and Hordak in She-Ra: Princess of Power.

George was also an acting teacher in New York City and Philadelphia for several years. He apprenticed under his mentor Milton Katselas at the Beverly Hills Playhouse in California. In addition, George frequently privately coached students, and actors appearing on the New York stage. Burt Reynolds on an episode of Inside the Actor's Studio referred to George DiCenzo as the best acting teacher in America.


DiCENZO, George Ralph
Born: 4/21/1940, New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A.
Died: 8/9/2010, Washington Crossing, Pennsylavnia, U.S.A.

George DiCenzo's westerns - actor:
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1973, 1975 (Newt, Mr. Bruce)
Kung Fu (TV) - 1974 (Jess)
How the West Was Won (TV) - 1979 (Tomaz)
The Frisco Kid - 1979 (Daryl Diggs)
Cowboy (TV) - 1983 (Davis Bentlow)
Guns of Paradise (TV) - 1991

RIP David L. Wolper

David Wolper, producer of 'Roots,' has died

(Associated Press)

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — David L. Wolper, who produced "Roots," is dead at 82 of congestive heart disease and complications of Parkinson's disease.

Wolper's spokesman, Dale Olson, said Wolper died in his Beverly Hills home Tuesday evening.

During a long career, Wolper also produced the children's classic "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory." But his TV work remained his best-known accomplishment, particularly "Roots." The ABC series was seen in whole or part by 130 million people — more than half the country — when it ran for eight nights in 1977.


WOLPER, David L. (David Lloyd Wolper)
Born: 1/11/1928, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 8/10/2010, Beverly Hills, California, U.S.A.

David L. Wolper's westerns - executive producer:
Appointment With Destiny: Showdown at O.K. Corral (TV) - 1972
The Honorable Sam Houston (TV) - 1975
I Will Fight No More Forever (TV) - 1985
North and South (TV) - 1985
North and South Book II (TV) - 1986
Heaven and Hell: North and South Book III - (TV) - 1994

Monday, August 9, 2010

RIP Patricia Neal

Actress Patricia Neal dies aged 84

Actress Patricia Neal, winner of both Academy and Tony awards, has died at her home in the north-western US state of Massachusetts at the age of 84, The New York Times reported.

The cause of her death was not immediately known, but the newspaper noted Neal had suffered three strokes early in her career and was semi-paralysed and unable to speak for a long time after that.

Neal won her Tony award before she was 21, following her Broadway debut in Lillian Hellman's play Another Part of the Forest.

The actress made her movie debut in the 1949 comedy John Loves Mary, where she played opposite the late former president Ronald Reagan.

She later starred in the screen version of John Patrick's play The Hasty Heart (1950), in which she played a nurse who tries to comfort a dying soldier, and The Breaking Point (1950), which was based on Ernest Hemingway's novel To Have and Have Not.

In 1964, Neal received an Oscar for best actress for her performance in the movie Hud, where she appeared with Paul Newman.

But a year later she had three strokes that left her in a coma for three weeks, The Times said.

Following these crises, she was able to learn to walk and talk again.

Despite a severely impaired memory that made it difficult to remember lines, she returned to the screen in 1968 in the movie The Subject Was Roses.

She was nominated for an Academy Award for that role, but did not win it.


NEAL, Patricia (Patsy Louise Neal)
Born: 1/20/1926, Packard, Kentucky, U.S.A.
Died: 8/8/2010, Edgartown, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Patricia Neal's westerns - actress:
Raton Pass - 1951 (Ann Challon)
Hud - 1963 (Alma Brown)
Kung Fu (TV) - 1974 (Sara Kingsley)
Little House on the Prairie (TV) - 1975 (Julia Sanderson)

RIP Roberto Cantoral

Rancho Viejo-based composer passes away in Mexico.

Rancho Viejo-based composer Roberto Cantoral has passed away after suffering a heart attack on a flight from Brownsville to Mexico City.

The El Universal newspaper reported on it's on-line edition Sunday that Cantoral's plane had to make an emergency landing in Toluca.

The newspaper reported that the 75-year-old composer had suffered from health problems for the past two years.

El Universal reported that Cantoral is expected to be cremated and his ashes may be scattered in his hometown of Tampico.

Cantoral is known for his compisitions for such songs as "La Barca," "El Triste," "El Reloj" and "Al Final."

The composer lived just outside of Brownsville in the Town of Rancho Viejo.

Cantoral's home, which can be seen off the frontage road of U.S. Expressway 77/83, is landscaped with several statues and a giant marble clock in honor of his hit song, "El Reloj."

The home was damaged by fire back in March 2006 but was restored.

El Universal reported that Cantrol had a life-term as president of Mexico's Society of Music Authors & Composers (SACM).

The newspaper reported that his body will be displayed for at least two hours at Mexico City's Palacio de Bellas Artes.

El Univesrsal reported that musicians Juan Gabriel, Joan Sebastián and Martín Urieta were notified about Cantoral's death.

Cantoral's daughter Itati Cantoral currently stars with singer Pedro Fernandez in the telenovela "Hasta Que El Dinero Nos Separe" on Univision.


CANTORAL, Roberto (Roberto Cantoral Garcia)
Born: 6/17/1935, Madero, Tamaulipas, Mexico
Died: 8/7/2010, Toluca, Mexico State, Mexico

Sunday, August 8, 2010

RIP Patricia Neal

Actress Patricia Neal dies aged 84

Actress Patricia Neal, winner of both Academy and Tony awards, has died at her home in the north-western US state of Massachusetts at the age of 84, The New York Times reported.

The cause of her death was not immediately known, but the newspaper noted Neal had suffered three strokes early in her career and was semi-paralysed and unable to speak for a long time after that.

Neal won her Tony award before she was 21, following her Broadway debut in Lillian Hellman's play Another Part of the Forest.

The actress made her movie debut in the 1949 comedy John Loves Mary, where she played opposite the late former president Ronald Reagan.

She later starred in the screen version of John Patrick's play The Hasty Heart (1950), in which she played a nurse who tries to comfort a dying soldier, and The Breaking Point (1950), which was based on Ernest Hemingway's novel To Have and Have Not.

In 1964, Neal received an Oscar for best actress for her performance in the movie Hud, where she appeared with Paul Newman.

But a year later she had three strokes that left her in a coma for three weeks, The Times said.

Following these crises, she was able to learn to walk and talk again.

Despite a severely impaired memory that made it difficult to remember lines, she returned to the screen in 1968 in the movie The Subject Was Roses.

She was nominated for an Academy Award for that role, but did not win it.


NEAL, Patricia (Patsy Louise Neal)
Born: 1/20/1926, Packard, Kentucky, U.S.A.
Died: 8/8/2010, Edgartown, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Patricia Neal's westerns - actress:
Raton Pass - 1951 (Ann Challon)
Hud - 1963 (Alma Brown)
Kung Fu (TV) - 1974 (Sara Kingsley)
Little House on the Prairie (TV) - 1975 (Julia Sanderson)

RIP Charlie Davao

Actor Charlie Davao dies, says Kuya Germs

08/08/2010 | 12:39 PM

Veteran character actor Charlie Davao, father of actor Ricky Davao, passed away at the Philippine General Hospital Sunday after battling colon cancer for months.

In an interview on radio dzBB, talent manager German "Kuya Germs" Moreno announced the elder Davao's demise. The details of his wake and interment will be announced soon, he added.

"Si Ginoong Charlie Davao, isa sa mga magagaling na character actors, ay pumanaw kaninang umaga (Mr. Charlie Davao, one of the best character actors, passed away this morning)," Moreno said.

Davao last appeared in GMA evening programs "Darna," "Rosalinda," and "Totoy Bato." He entered show business in 1959. — Sophia M. Dedace/LBG, GMANews.TV


DAVAO, Charlie (Charles Davao)
Born: 1935, Iloilo City, Philippines
Died: 7/8/2010, Manila, Philippines

Charlie Davao's western - actor:
Isaac... Dugo ni Abraham - 1982 (Don Salvador)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

RIP Larry Yachimec

The theatre community is mourning the death of actor Larry Yachimec.

Yachimec was well-known in Edmonton, having first appeared at the Citadel in 1979. Over the years, he appeared in dozens of productions on Edmonton stages. He originated the role of Jacob Marley in Tom Wood's "A Christmas Carol" in 2000 and played the role six times over the production's current 11 year run.

Citadel Theatre Artistic Director Bob Baker was a long-time friend of Yachimec. Baker says, "Larry Yachimec was a complete original. In his life and his art he was curious, inventive, spontaneous, hilarious, off-kilter, wise and compassionate. I have had the pleasure of being Larry's friend and collaborator for twenty-eight years, and almost as many productions, and he never failed to surprise, amuse and move me."

Yachimec had relocated to Barrie, Ontario, with his family. He died there Sunday after a battle with cancer. He was 51.


YACHIMEC, Larry (Lawrence Yachimec)
Born: 1951, Canada
Died: 8/1/2010, Barrie, Ontario, Canada

Larry Yachimec's western - actor:
The Gunfighters (TV) - 1989 (Turner hand)

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

RIP Robert Boyle

Iconic Production Designer Robert F. Boyle Dies at 100

Iconic Production Designer Robert F. Boyle, a four-time Academy Award nominee for Art Direction for his work on “North by Northwest,” “Gaily, Gaily,” “The Shootist” and “Fiddler on the Roof ” and recipient of an Honorary Oscar in 2008 for his work on these and more than 86 other motion pictures, died yesterday of natural causes after a two-day stay at Cedars Sinai Hospital. He was 100.

In 1997 Boyle was voted a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Art Directors Guild. In 2001 he was further honored with the Hollywood Production Designer of the Year Award by the Hollywood Film Festival. Recently he was given a tribute by the American Cinematheque and the Art Directors Guild with a screening at the Egyptian Theatre of two of his designed films, “The Wolf Man” (1941) and “Gaily, Gaily” (1969). In 1973 he was nominated for an Emmy for “The Red Pony.”

Among his other major motion picture credits as a production designer are “The Birds,” “Winter Kills,” “The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas,” “Private Benjamin,” “Portnoy’s Complaint,” “The Thomas Crown Affair,” “In Cold Blood,” “How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying,” “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming,” “The Shootist” and the original “Cape Fear.”

Boyle worked on numerous films for Alfred Hitchcock and Norman Jewison as well as for such other famed directors as Tom Mankiewicz, Penny Marshall, Joe Dante, Sylvester Stallone, Hal Ashby, Arthur Hiller and Don Siegel. Until he was hospitalized he was a Distinguished Lecturer at the American Film Institute Conservatory in Los Angeles where he was considered the “guiding light” of the Institute’s production design department.

Boyle is the subject of Daniel Raim’s Oscar-nominated documentary, “The Man On Lincoln’s Nose” (2000), which refers to Hitchcock’s “North By Northwest” film that Boyle designed. He also is a prominent subject in Raim’s newest documentary about Production Designers, “Something’s Gonna Live,” that includes participation by three other deceased production designers, Henry Bumstead, Albert Nozaki and Harold Michelson.

Robert Boyle was born October 10, 1909, in Los Angeles and was a graduate of the School of Architecture of the University of Southern California (1933). He began his art direction career that year at Paramount Studios moving from there to Universal Studios. In 1941 Hitchcock chose him to be the art director on his “Saboteur” film. He served as a member of the Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences for nine years and was a two-term president of the Art Directors Guild.

Boyle is survived by two daughters: Emily Boyle-Biddle of Hollywood, CA, and Susan Licon of Toledo, Oregon, and three grandchildren.

His wife, Bess Taffel Boyle, died in 1999. Memorial services are pending.


BOYLE, Robert F.
Born: 10/10/1909, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 8/1/2010, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Robert F. Boyle's westerns - art director, production designer:
The Gal Who Took the West - 1949 [art director]
Sierra - 1950 [art director]
Bronco Buster - 1952 [art director]
Gunsmoke - 1953 [art director]
Ride Clear of Diablo - 1954 [art director]
Chief Crazy Horse - 1955 [art director]
Webb Pierce and His Wanderin' Boys - 1955 [art director]
A Day of Fury - 1956 [art director]
Casey Jones (TV) - 1957 [art director]
Buchanan Rides Alone - 1958 [art director]
Wild Heritage - 1958 [art director]
The Reward - 1965 [art director]
Bite the Bullet - 1975 [art director]
The Shootist - 1976 [production designer]

Monday, August 2, 2010

RIP Bernard West

Emmy winner Bernie West dies at 92

Worked on 'All in the Family,' 'Jeffersons,' 'Three's Company'


By Mike Barnes
Aug 2, 2010, 02:39 PM ET

Bernie West, an Emmy-winning screenwriter and producer who worked on the
classic sitcoms "All in the Family," "The Jeffersons" and "Three's
Company," died July 29 at his Beverly Hills home of complications from
Alzheimer's disease. He was 92.


West won his Emmy in 1973 for writing, with Mickey Ross, the "Bunkers
and the Swingers" episode on "All in the Family." He received two other
noms as a producer for his work on "All in the Family" and "Three's
Company."


In 1971, he and Ross submitted a script for "All in the Family" to
Norman Lear and began what Bernie referred to as his first steady job.
They worked on the CBS sitcom from 1971-74, where they were writers,
script consultants, story editors and eventually, with Don Nicholl,
producers.


West and Ross created the character of Maude, played by Bea Arthur, on a
1972 episode of "All in the Family" that spun into another long-running
CBS series. And he and his partners worked on the 1974 pilot script of
NBC's "Chico and the Man."


Nicholl, Ross and West later wrote and produced for "The Jeffersons,"
which ran for 10 years, and then "Three's Company." Other series
included "The Dumplings" and two spinoffs of "Three's Company," "The
Ropers" and "Three's a Crowd."


Born Bernard Wessler in the Bronx, he and Martin Rosenblatt, later known
as Ross Martin of "Wild Wild West" fame, formed the stand-up team of
Ross & West. When Martin left to get married, West worked with his
friend, Isadore Rovinsky, who changed his name to Mickey Ross so that
the act could continue as Ross & West.


Ross & West worked nightclubs and vaudeville. "Everything we did may not
have been original," West once said, "but what we stole was good!"


A popular entertainer in the "Borscht Belt" of upstate New York, he
spent many summers performing in the Catskills, at Green Mansions in the
Adirondacks and at Tamiment in the Poconos. Among his early acting
credits were appearances on "The Garry Moore Show," "Dixon of Dock
Green," "The Arthur Murray Show," "The Jack Paar Show," "The Ed Sullivan
Show," "The Phil Silvers Show," "Car 54, Where Are You?" and Gomer Pyle,
U.S.M.C."


West also created the role of Dr. Kitchell, the song-writing dentist, on
Broadway in "Bells Are Ringing" starring Judy Holliday, which opened in
1956. He went on to recreate the role in the 1960 film, which also
starred Holliday as well as Dean Martin.


Other Broadway appearances included "All American" with Ray Bolger,
"Poor Bitos" with Donald Pleasance, "The Beauty Part" with Bert Lahr and
the 1969 revival of "The Front Page" with Helen Hayes.


West and his wife, Mimi, who died in 2004, supported numerous cultural,
political, arts and community service organizations, including the Los
Angeles Free Clinic (now known as the Saban Free Clinic) and Baruch
College, where they endowed the Bernie West Theater (referred to by
current students as "The Bernie").


West is survived by his daughters, Ellen Harris and Isabel Davis;
son-in-law Robert Davis; and grandsons Michael and David Harris.


WEST, Bernie (Bernard Wessler)
Born: 5/30/1918, Bronx, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 7/29/2010, Beverly Hills, California, U.S.A.

Bernie West's western - actor:
Calamity Jane (TV) - 1963 (Henry Miller)

RIP Veronique Silver

The actress Veronica Virlojeux, said Veronique Silver, left us. The actress died at the age of 77 years, last July 24.

Silver appeared in more than forty films. It began in 1954 under the direction of Sacha Guitry in Si Versailles me counted. She attracted the attention of movie goers in the role of Madam Jouve in 1981's “The Woman Next Door”, a beautiful film by Francois Truffaut starring Fanny Ardant and Gerard Depardieu. Veronique Silver worked with some great filmmakers such as Claude Miller, Alain Renais, Jacques Pinoteau and Jacques Doillon. Recently, she played the role of a client of the marriage bureau in “Je vous trouve très beau” the first film by director Isabella Mergault. She appeared in her last film in 2007 under the direction of Noemie Lvovsky in “Faut que ça danse”. She was the wife of the actor Henry Virlojeux, who died in 1995.


SILVER, Veronique (Louise Isabelle Maria Puret)
Born: 9/2/1931, Amiens, Somme, France
Died: 7/24/2010, Paris, Ile-de-France, France

Veronique Silver's western – actress:
Fortune (TV) - 1967

RIP Mitch Miller

Orchestra leader Mitch Miller, who led 'Sing Along', dies at age 99

August 02, 2010

Mitch Miller, the goateed orchestra leader who asked Americans to “Sing Along With Mitch” on television and records, has died at age 99.

His daughter, Margaret Miller Reuther, says her father died in New York City after a short illness.

Miller was a key record executive at Columbia Records in the pre-rock ‘n’ roll era, making hits with singers Rosemary Clooney, Patti Page, Johnny Mathis and Tony Bennett.

“Sing Along With Mitch” started as a series of records, then became a popular NBC show starting in early 1961. Miller’s stiff-armed conducting style and signature goatee became famous.


MILLER, Mitch (Mitchell William Miller)
Born: 7/4/1911, Rochester, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 7/31/2010, New York City, New York, U.S.A.

Mitch Miller's western - soundtrack:
Strange Lady in Town - 1955

RIP Tom Mankiewicz

Bond Screenwriter Tom Mankiewicz Passes Away at Age 68

by Peter Hall Aug 2nd 2010 // 12:03PM

Tom Mankiewicz, best recognized for his work as a screenwriter on several of James Bond's 1970s films, passed away on July 31st after losing a struggle with cancer. Mankiewicz, son of All About Eve screenwriter Joseph Mankiewicz, has his name on the screenplays for Diamonds Are Forever, Live and Let Die, The Man With the Golden Gun, Ladyhawke, and Dragnet, but that was hardly the extent of his career. In addition to being a regular Bond writer, the L.A. Native was also a television writer and director who worked on such projects as Bob Hope Presents, Movin' With Nancy, Hart to Hart, and Tales From the Crypt.

Mankiewicz was also one of Hollywood's great script fixers, often lending his talents to movies without official receiving an official, on-screen credit. As a "creative consultant," he was responsible for various duties on The Spy Who Loved Me, Moonraker, Superman 1 & 2, Gremlins, War Games, and Batman.

The Bond-enthusiast fansite MI6.co.uk has a rather extensive and loving remembrance of Tom Mankiewicz, a definite read for fans. Our best wishes go out to his friends and family.


MANKIEWICZ, Tom (Thomas Frank Mankiewicz)
Born: 6/1/1942, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 7/31/2010, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Tom Mankiewicz's western - production manager:
The Comancheros - 1961