Wednesday, March 28, 2012

RIP Warren Stevens

Actor Warren Stevens dies at 92

Known for sci-fi roles in film and on TV

By Variety Staff

Actor Warren Stevens, who appeared in films including "Forbidden Planet" and "The Barefoot Contessa" and in numerous TV shows ranging from the original "Star Trek" to "ER," died in Sherman Oaks, Calif., of lung disease on Tuesday, March 27. He was 92.

 Stevens was one of the stars of the 1956-57 NBC series "Tales of the 77th Bengal Lancers" and of the 1969-70 NBC series "Bracken's World," set at a fictional Hollywood studio, but his career in television was defined by guest starring roles in dozens and dozens of series, from Westerns such as "Wagon Train," "Have Gun -- Will Travel," "Gunsmoke" and "Bonanza" to sci-fiers including both the original and 1980s version of "The Twilight Zone," "Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea," "Land of the Giants" and "Star Trek" to crime or spy dramas including "The Untouchables," "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.," "Mission: Impossible" and "Ironside." He also guested on "MASH" and made his final TV appearance in a 2006 episode of "ER."

Stevens first appeared on the smallscreen in three episodes of the very early anthology series "Actor's Studio" in 1948-49 and earned his first film credit on 1951's "The Frogmen," starring Richard Widmark and Dana Andrews. The actor appeared in seven films in 1952, including the Humphrey Bogart newspaper film "Deadline -- U.S.A.," in which he had a significant supporting role as a reporter.

He appeared with Bogart again in 1954's "The Barefoot Contessa" and was the fourth lead in 1956 sci-fi classic "Forbidden Planet," playing the doctor, Lt. "Doc"' Ostrow. Later film credits include Norman Jewison's "40 Pounds of Trouble," with Tony Curtis and Suzanne Pleshette; 1966 Lana Turner weepie "Madame X"; and 1983 Burt Reynolds starrer "Stroker Ace."

Born in Clark's Summit, Penn., Stevens attended the Naval Academy but left before graduating due to problems with his vision, though he later served as a pilot in the U.S. Army Air Corps during WWII. He developed his interest in acting while at Annapolis and did summer stock before entering the service during the war. After WWII he returned to summer stock, worked in radio and joined the Actors Studio in New York. He made his Broadway debut in "Galileo," which had a brief run in 1947, and appeared in several other plays on the Rialto. His small but important role in "Detective Story," which later became a film, led to a contract at 20th Century Fox.

Stevens was twice married and divorced. He is survived by three sons, Adam, Matthew and Lawrence.

STEVENS Warren (Warren Albert Stevens)
Born: 11/2/1919, Clark’s Summit, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
Died: 3/27/2012, Sherman Oaks, California, U.S.A.

Warren Stevens’ westerns – actor:
The Man from Bitter Ridge – 1955 (Linc Jackman)
Robber’s Roost – 1955 (Smokey)
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1957, 1961, 1963 (Jim Rackmil, Frank Cassidy, Lucas)
Have Gun – Will Travel (TV) – 1957, 1963 (Major J. Wilson, Colonel Draco, Costigan)
Man or Gun – 1958 (Mike Ferris)
No Name on the Bullet – 1959 (Lou Fraden)
Tales of Wells Fargo (TV) – 1959 (Clay Allison)
Laramie (TV) – 1959 (James Hedrick)
Wagon Train (TV) – 1959, 1962 (Jonas Parker, Jack Thorne)
Lawman (TV) – 1960 (Frederick Jameson)
Tombstone Territory (TV) – 1960
The Rebel (TV) – 1961 (Christopher Portal)
Stagecoach to Dancer’s Rock – 1962 (Jess Dollard)
The Dakotas (TV) – 1963 (Cain Manning)
The Virginian (TV) – 1964, 1967, 1970 (Ray Harding, Richard Pierce, Paul Carson)
Rawhide (TV) – 1965 (Talbot)
The Loner (TV) – 1965 (Charlie Parker)
Bonanza (TV) – 1965, 1967, 1968, 1970 (Paul Mandel, Count Alexis, Sam Bragan, Owen Driscoll)
The Legend of Jesse James (TV) – 1966 (Sheriff Boyd Stevens)
A Man Called Shenandoah (TV) – 1966 (Jared Abel)
Gunpoint – 1966 (Nate Harlan)
The Big Valley (TV) – 1966 (Bert Jason)
Death Valley Days (TV) – 1966 (Doc Holliday)
Daniel Boone (TV) – 1966, 1967 (Mathew Eliot / Edward Eliot, Capt. Robert George)
The High Chaparral (TV) – 1967 (Captain Thomas Dabney)
Iron Horse (TV) – 1967 (Morgan Kinlock)
The Trail to Hope Rose (TV) – 2004 (Samuel Drigger)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

RIP Tony Giorgio

Tony Giorgio 1923 - 2012

Giorgio has appeared in more than 100 feature films and television shows. He was also the technical advisor on magic and gambling for Mission Impossible. One of his notable performances was as Bruno Tattaglia, in The Godfather.

Beginning in 1991, he lectured and wrote about con games and gambler's subterfuges. Giorgio wrote on the subject of card manipulation and gambling in Genii magazine.

He has produced and offered for sale several DVDs. A visual treatise on the art of handmucking (holding out), "The Ultimate Work," detailed the magicians' palm and the applicability of the gamblers' palm and methodology to the art of card magic.

GIORGIO, Tony (Joseph Antony Giorgio)
Born: 9/27/1923, Bronx, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 2/1/2012, Van Nuys, California, U.S.A.

Tony Giorgio’s western – actor:
A Big Hand for the Little Lady – 1966 (Steamboat)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

RIP Bob Henry

LAGUNA BEACH, CA, Mar 21, 2012 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- Bob Henry, producer and director of such innovative television series as "The Nat King Cole Show" and "The Flip Wilson Show" passed away on March 18th at his home in Laguna Beach. Henry was 92.

Henry was present at the birth of the television variety show, moving from radio to television in 1950, as an associate producer in New York on the Colgate Comedy Hour with Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis. When Martin and Lewis migrated west, Henry became a staff employee of NBC and moved to Los Angeles.

During the course of 50-plus years in television, Henry produced and/or directed more than 25 different variety series and specials including "The Andy Williams Show" series, "Norman Rockwell's America," "The Carpenters," "The Summer Chevy Show," "The Glen Campbell Music Show" series, "The Emmy Awards," "The Grammy Awards," "The Gladys Knight and the Pips" series, "The Captain and Tennille" series, "The Perry Como Show," "200 years of Comedy with Jonathan Winters," "Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters" series, a Bob Hope special, and "A Tribute to Mother Maybell Carter." Additionally, Henry produced and directed "The American Black Achievement Awards" numerous times.

Henry was noted for his groundbreaking role in helping African American performers reach a broader audience. In 1957 Henry produced, directed and wrote "The Nat King Cole Show" which was the first network television show ever to star a black male performer. The show was so controversial that it ran without national commercials and several NBC affiliates refused to air the show.

In 1970, Henry helped make Flip Wilson a star. Henry directed a Flip Wilson Special a year prior to producing the series, which ran for four years on NBC. "The Flip Wilson Show" was the first variety show starring an African American performer to be number one for several weeks and ended the 1970 and 1971 seasons as the number two show in all of television. Henry received both an Emmy and a Peabody Award for the show.

Henry was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1919, and graduated from Tufts University in 1940. He performed as a comedian in the Catskills during the early 1940's, entertained the troops after WWII in the Pacific Theatre and served as an on-air personality for radio stations in Boston and New York in the late 1940's.

A 30-year Laguna Beach resident with a history of community service, Henry served on the Festival of Arts board of directors from 2001 to 2007, and as the board president of the Festival of Arts in 2004. Henry was president of the Laguna Beach Garden Club for two years and a recipient, along with his wife Annette, of the Gardner of the Year award from the Orange County District of the California Garden Clubs, Inc. He was also actively involved in promoting the building of a new Senior Citizen Center in Laguna Beach.

Henry is survived by Annette, his wife of 30 years; his daughter, Ruth Massaro of Mill Valley, CA; his son, Keith Henry of Studio City; two grandchildren, Robert Merithew of Dayton, OH and Brendan Merithew of Pittsboro, NC and four great grandchildren: Anson, Amelia, Sarah and Abner. Henry was preceded in death by his first wife, Shirley in 1972.

Funeral services are Monday, March 26th at 10 am at St. Catherine's of Siena in Laguna Beach. A rosary will precede the mass at 9:30 am.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and/or the Roaring Fork Education Foundation, in memory of Bob Henry.

Born: 1919, Boston Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Died: 3/18/2012, Laguna Beach, California, U.S.A.

Bob Henry's western - producer:
The Roy Rogers Show (TV) - 1951 [producer]

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

RIP Milt Hammerman

Milt Hamerman dies at 87
Casting director was talent exec at Universal

Milt Hamerman, former casting director and talent executive for Universal Studios Television, died of natural causes on Feb. 24 in Los Angeles. He was 87.
He began his career in entertainment first as an actor, appearing in guest roles on shows such as "Sea Hunt," starring Lloyd Bridges; he eventually moved on to become an agent with the Meyer Mishkin Agency.

Casting director Lynn Stalmaster started him on his long career as a casting director. While working for Stalmaster, Hamerman helped cast films such as "The Graduate" and "In the Heat of the Night" as well as TV series "Hogan's Heroes," "Combat" and "Ben Casey," among many others. Hamerman then moved over to Warner Bros. Studios, where he worked on the series "Bonanza" and "High Chaparral.
After a few years, Hamerman joined Universal Studios Television as a casting director and was subsequently promoted to VP of talent. At Universal Hamerman directly cast or oversaw the casting of TV series and telepics throughout the 1970s and 1980s, including "Kojak," "Rich Man Poor Man," "Centennial," "The Law," "Columbo," "McMillan and Wife," "Banacek," "Miami Vice," "Magnum, P.I.," "The Six Million Dollar Man" and "The Bionic Woman."

In 1988 the Casting Society of America presented Hamerman with the Hoyt Bowers Award, bestowed annually for career achievements in casting. Hamerman was also a member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Hamerman eventually moved to Los Angeles and graduated from UCLA with a degree in theater.

Hamerman's wife Dot died in 2007 after 47 years of marriage. He is survived by his daughters Paula, a former talent agent, and Lonnie, a casting director and CSA member; and his sister, Shirley Weiner.

HAMERMAN, Milt (Milton D. Hamerman)
Born: 1925, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
Died: 2/24/2012, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Milt Hamerman's westerns - actor: casting director, supervisor:
Tombstone Territory (TV) - 1958 (actor)
Death Valley Days (TV) - 1965-1968 [casting director]
The High Chaparral (TV) - 1968-1970 [casting supervisor]
Bonanza (TV) - 1968-1972 [casting supervisor]

Sunday, March 18, 2012

RIP Francisco Valladares

The actor Francisco Valladares, who died Saturday March 17, 2012 in Madrid at age 76 as a result of leukemia, was a leading man of perfect diction. He lent his voice to great actors such as Robert Redford, Richard Burton, Alain Delon and Clint Eastwood and, above all, was the "soul mate" of poets such as Miguel Hernandez, who sublimated.

With a voice from "himself" with which he was born and with training and a taste for the classics when he was very young in Seville he appeared in over sixty films and also theater and television.

Valladares had suffered with leukemia for four years recovered in 2010 and returned to work at 70 in 1989’s,”Terrible Obsession”. During the filming of “Terrible Obsession” he worked with a young actor, Arsenio Leon, who became ill with leukemia and he would see him every day at the Gregorio Maranon hospital, where he was treated. The boy, whom he regarded as the son never had died later, in 2008, Valladares, suffered a heart attack in 1998, and then became ill with leukemia

The actor, a favorite son of Seville, studied elocution and began his career at 14 years of age doing children's theater and continued in the Spanish Theater University (TEU) and table of actors of the National Radio of Spain.

In 1956 he became a voice dubber for TVE and was the  voice of actors like Richard Burton, Alain Delon, Clint Eastwood and Robert Redford. But he, according to Fernandez Montesinos, he was "a complete player, a humanist and a Renaissance artist," who liked to dub, but also enjoyed, singing and acting and, especially, recite the verse of poets such as Federico Garcia Lorca and Miguel Hernández, his "soul mate".

But that was not what made him "immensely popular", it was in television programs which he made for many years alongside his "woman," Maria Teresa Campos.

One of the things he was proudest of was his participation in symphony concerts because, he said, it was "unreal" as if transported to a different time and place. He was "Oedipus Rex" with the RTVE Orchestra, but he remembered especially the first , he did in the Palace of Music directed by Hans von Benda with, Irene Gutierrez Caba.

Two years ago, Valladares, who made 2,500 performances of "On the street of Alcala" and 2,300 for "Mom I want to be an artist", released a CD collection of classics reciting, as Miguel Hernández and Rafael de Leon, although he had already published years before "Verses of the earth", with Manuel Dicenta and Nuria Espert.

VALLADARES, Francisco (Francisco Valladares Barragán) 
Born: 8/20/1935, Pilas, Seville, Andalucía, Spain
Died: 3/17/2002, Madrid, Madrid, Spain

Francisco Valladares's westerns - voice dubber:
4 Bullets for Joe - 1963 [Spanish voice of Fernando Montes]
Charge of the Seventh – 1964 [Spanish voice of Edmund Purdom]
Four Bullets for Joe – 1964 [Spanish voice of Fernando Montes]
Finger on the Trigger - 1965 [Spanish voice of Antonio Moino Rojo]
Johnny West – 1965 [Spanish voice of Mimmo Palmara]
Shoot to Kill – 1965 [Spanish voice of Edmund Purdom]
The Avenger – 1966 [Spanish voice of Hugo Blanco]
Django Does Not Forgive – 1966 [Spanish voice of Hugo Blanco]
The Fury of Johnny Kid - 1966 [Spanish voice of Arthur Grant]
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly - 1966 [Spanish voice of Clint Eastwood]
Mutiny at Fort Sharp – 1966 [Spanish voice of Umberto Ceriani]
Django Kill – 1967 [Spanish voice of Tomás Milián]
Dynamite Joe – 1967 [Spanish voice of Rik Van Nutter]
Face to Face - 1967 [Spanish voice of Gian Maria Volonté]
The Rattler Kid – 1967 [Spanish voice of Brad Harris]
Two Crosses at Danger Pass – 1967 [Spanish voice of Mario Novelli]
Blood and Guns – 1968 [Spanish voice of John Steiner]
Run, Man, Run – 1968 [Spanish voice of Luciano Rossi]
The Price of Power – 1969 [Spanish voice of Warren Venders]
Sundance Cassidy and Butch the Kid – 1969 [Spanish voice of Luis Barboo]
Awkward Hands – 1970 [Spanish voice of Manuel de Blas]
The Grand Duel - 1972 [Spanish voice of Marc Mazza]

Saturday, March 17, 2012

RIP Eileen McDonough

Eileen was born in Philadelphia, PA on May 20, 1962. She passed away peacefully in Van Nuys, CA on March 13, 2012. She was preceded in death by her father, Joe; mother, Loretta; and sister, Elena. She is survived by her daughter, Raeleen; brothers, Joe and Eddie; and sister, Lori.

Eileen was an accomplished theater and child actress and member of the Screen Actors Guild. Eileen was loved by all and will be deeply missed. A private memorial service will be held in the future.

Born: 5/20/1962, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
Died: 3/13/2012, Van Nuys, California, U.S.A.

Eileen McDonough’s western – actress:
Gunsmoke – 1975 (Bessy)

RIP Pintér Tamás

Tamás Pintér died suddenly at the age of 70 from a serious disease, died on Wednesday, March 14, 2012, said the actress, Erika Balogh, widow of the stuntman and actor. She recalled that since 1965, Tamás Pintér had taught actors acrobatics, fencing and stunt riding, he was present all the time earned the stunt master an Oscar as well. On March 15 the occasion of the Hungarian Order of Merit awarded the Knight's Cross, which was received by his wife.

Tamás Pintér was born on December 12, 1941. He had taught at The Theater and Film Academy since 1967 and became associate professor. He had been an invited speaker in America and also taught at the University of Washington. The Gold Cross of Merit of the Hungarian Republic was presented to him from the City-Lipótváros Freeman.

He had appeared in more than 400 film roles in Hungary and also worked in theater as a motion designer andaction director. Main theater and opera credits include Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Cyrano de Bergerac, The Bank Ban, The Mahagonny, in Lucia di Lammermoor, Sichuan is a Good Man, The Brothers Karamazov, West Side Story, Phantom of the Opera, The Human Tragedy and the Nibelungen Ring.

He also played among the Heavenly Lamb, the Siege of Bistrita, the Unburied Dead movie, and Pepper, to Alexander Rose, the Cantor, and Linda T.I.R. television series.

The recently deceased was a loved and respected colleague, stunt, pentathlon coach, professional fencing coach, President of the Hungarian Stunt Association of Theater, Film and Television University, a retired university lecturer, who was called upon to speak at the  Lion's Lecture Theater

PINTER, Tamás (Tamás Pintér Oroszlán)
Born: 12/12/1941, Hungary
Died: 3/14/2012, Hungary

Tamás Pintér’s western – actor:
The Wind Blows Under Your Feet – 1976

Thursday, March 15, 2012

RIP Erico Menczer

Italian Cinematographer Erico Menczer has died at 86. One of the great directors of photography of Italian cinema died at his home in Rome on March 10th, but the news was just released today by his family. In his long and distinguished career Menczer worked with directors like Federico Fellini, Michelangelo Antonioni, Mario Monicelli, Luciano Salce, Marco Risi, Dario Argento, and with great actors such as Toto, Anna Magnani, Vittorio Gassman, Nino Manfredi, Vittorio De Sica. One of his most famous films in which he worked was ''I soliti ignoti'' directed by Monicelli. His signature also appears in the first two episodes of  the Fantozzi saga, starring Paolo Villaggio. Menczer was born in Fiume, in Dalmatia, in 1926. His real name was Eric, but was forced to Italianize it under the fascist government. At the end of the Second World War he first moved to Padua, then to Genoa, and finally to Rome, where he began his film career with the documentary “Piccolo cabotaggio pittorico” (1952), directed by Aglauco Casadio which won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. 

MENCZER, Erico (Eric Meczer)
Born: 5/8/1926, Fiume, Istria, Italy
Died: 3/10/2012, Rome, Lazio, Italy

Erico Menczer's western - cinematographer:
White Fang - 1973