Monday, February 29, 2016

RIP George Kennedy

George Kennedy, Oscar Winner for 'Cool Hand Luke,' Dies at 91

The Hollywood Reporter
By Mike Barnes and Duane Byrge

The burly actor played bad guys in such films as 'Charade' and 'Thunderbolt & Lightfoot' before memorably playing against type in the 'Naked Gun' movies.

George Kennedy, a bear of a man who won an Oscar for his performance as the sadistic chain gang prisoner Dragline in Cool Hand Luke and delighted audiences as a dimwitted police captain in the zany Naked Gun comedies, has died. He was 91.

Kennedy died Sunday morning in Boise, Idaho, his grandson, Cory Schenkel, said on his Facebook page.

Until his recognition in Cool Hand Luke (1967), Kennedy was usually cast as a tough guy. Following his Oscar win for best supporting actor, he went on to star in The Guns of the Magnificent Seven (1969) and received second billing in such films as The Good Guys and the Bad Guys (1969) with Robert Mitchum; Dirty Dingus Magee (1970) with Frank Sinatra; Fools’ Parade (1971) with James Stewart; and The Eiger Sanction (1975) with Clint Eastwood, a frequent co-star.

A former Army career soldier, Kennedy played a series of heavies in the movies. He attacked Cary Grant with a steel claw in Stanley Donen's Charade (1963), pursued Joan Crawford with an ax in Strait-Jacket (1964), attempted to assassinate Gregory Peck in Mirage (1965) and kicked Jeff Bridges to death in Thunderbolt & Lightfoot (1974).

The 6-foot-4, barrel-chested New Yorker also appeared as airplane mechanic Joe Patroni in the star-studded disaster thriller Airport (1970) and its three sequels.

Along with Leslie Nielsen, another actor with a straight-arrow reputation, Kennedy played comically against type as Captain Ed Hocken (replacing Alan North from the TV show) in the antic Jim Abrahams/Zucker Brothers spoofs The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! (1988), The Naked Gun 2 ½: The Smell of Fear (1991) and The Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult (1994).

On television, the sandy-haired Irish-American starred in two short-lived series in the 1970s — as a homicide detective turned priest in NBC’s Sarge and as L.A. beat cop Bumper Morgan on CBS’ The Blue Knight, based on the Joseph Wambaugh best-seller. He also played Ewing family nemesis Carter McKay from 1988-91 on the CBS primetime soap Dallas.

Recently, big George appeared in the films Another Happy Day (2011) and Mark Wahlberg's The Gambler (2014).

George Kennedy Jr. was born Feb. 18, 1925, in New York City. His father was a pianist and a composer/conductor at the Proctor’s theater in Manhattan, and his mother danced with vaudeville’s Le Ballet Classique. He made his acting debut at age 2 in a touring company of Bringing Up Father, traveling with the show for two years, and later voiced children’s radio shows.

Following high school graduation, Kennedy enlisted in the Army in 1943 with the hope of becoming a pilot in the Army Air Corps. He wound up in the infantry, served under Gen. George Patton and distinguished himself with his valor: He won two Bronze stars and four rows of combat and service ribbons. After World War II, a bizarre medical condition — his left leg was shorter than his right by three inches — left him in traction for two years.

(Kennedy would later play Patton, the target of an assassination plot, in 1978's Brass Target opposite Sophia Loren, John Cassavetes and Robert Vaughn.)

In the mid-1950s after re-enlisting, Kennedy worked in Armed Forces Radio and Television, and that got him a job in New York as technical adviser (and a few uncredited appearances) on the army-camp comedy Sgt. Bilko. Watching Phil Silvers and show creator Ned Hiken work whetted his appetite for acting. Additional good fortune arrived when the production company’s secretary referred him to a chiropractor who alleviated his leg and back problems.

With 30 percent disability after 15 years of service, Kennedy moved to Hollywood in 1959 and played an array of toughs who could go up against such stars of TV Westerns as 6-foot-7 James Arness in Gunsmoke, 6-foot-6 Clint Walker in Cheyenne and 6-foot-6 Chuck Connors in The Rifleman.

“The big guys were on TV and they needed big lumps to eat up,” Kennedy said in a 1971 interview. “All I had to do was show up on the set, and I got beaten up.”

Of course, he fought Paul Newman early on in Stuart Rosenberg’s drama Cool Hand Luke as Dragline, the leader of the prisoners who gives Newman's character his nickname.

“The marvelous thing about that movie,” Kennedy recalled in a 1978 interview, “was that as my part progresses, I changed from a bad guy to a good guy. The moguls in Hollywood must have said, ‘Hey, this fellow can do something besides be a bad guy.’ ”

Kennedy’s vast body of work also includes Spartacus (1960); Lonely Are the Brave (1962); the John Wayne classic The Sons of Katie Elder (1965); The Dirty Dozen (1967); The Boston Strangler (1968); Earthquake (1974); Death on the Nile (1978), Albert Brooks’ Modern Romance (1981), in which he played himself as the star of an atrocious sci-fi film; Bolero (1984) opposite Bo Derek; Small Soldiers (1997), in which he voiced Brick Bazooka; and Wim Wenders’ Don’t Come Knocking (2005).

He appeared in NBC's See How They Run (1964), which is considered the first movie made for TV. He also played President Warren G. Harding in the 1979 miniseries Backstairs at the White House and had a long-standing role on the CBS soap opera The Young and the Restless.

Kennedy's wife, Joan, died in September.

KENNEDY, George (George Kennedy Jr.)
Born: 2/18/1925, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 2/28/2016, Boise, Idaho, U.S.A.

George Kennedy’s westerns – actor:
Cheyenne (TV) – 1959 (Lee Nelson)
Colt .45 (TV) – 1959 (Hank)
The Deputy (TV) – 1959 (Tex)
Sugarfoot (TV) – 1959, 1960 (Sykes, Ross Kuhn)
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964, 1966 (Emil, Jake Bayloe, Pat Swarner, Hug, Stark, Cyrus, Ben Payson)
Have Gun – Will Travel (TV) – 1960, 1961, 1963 (Lt. Bryson, Sam Tarnitzer, Deke, Rud Saxon, Brother Grace, Big Jim,
Laramie (TV) – 1960 (Gallagher henchman)
Lawman (TV) – 1960 (Burt)
Maverick (TV) – 1960 (Deputy Jones)
Riverboat (TV) – 1960 (Gunner Slagle)
Shotgun Slade (TV) – 1960 (Tex)
The Tall Man (TV) – 1960, 1962 (Cyrus Canfield)
Bat Masterson (TV) – 1961 (Sheriff Zeke Armitage)
Bonanza (TV) – 1961, 1964 (Peter Long, Waldo Watson)
Gunslinger (TV) – 1961 (Sheriff)
Klondike (TV) – 1961 (Ira Shallop)
Lonely Are the Brave – 1962 (Deputy Sheriff Gutierrez)
Death Valley Days (TV) – 1962 (Steamboat Sully)
Outlaws (TV) – 1962 (Joe Ferris)
Rawhide (TV) – 1962 (George Wales)
Tales of Wells Fargo (TV) – 1962 (Hawk)
The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters (TV) – 1963 (Angus)
The Virginian (TV) – 1964, 1965, 1966 (Jack, Tom 'Bear' Suchette, Huck Harkness)
Shenandoah – 1965 (Col. Fairchild)
The Sons of Katie Elder – 1965 (Curley)
Daniel Boone (TV) – 1965 (Zach Morgan)
Laredo (TV) – 1965 (Jess Moran)
A Man Called Shenandoah (TV) – 1965 (Mitchell Canady)
The Big Valley (TV) – 1966 (Jack Thatcher)
The Legend of Jesse James (TV) – 1966 (Blodgett)
The Ballad of Josie – 1967 (Arch Ogden)
Bandolero! – 1968 (Sheriff July Johnson)
The Good Guys and the Bad Guys – 1969 (McKay)
Guns of the Magnificent Seven – 1969 (Chris)
Dirty Dingus Magee – 1970 (Herkimer 'Hoke' Birdsill)
Cahill U.S. Marshal – 1973 (Fraser)
A Cry in the Wilderness – 1974 (Sam Hadley)
The Gunfighters (TV) – 1987 (Deke Turner)
Kenny Rogers as The Gambler, Part III: The Legend Continues (TV) – 1987 (Gen. Nelson Miles)
Lonesome Dove: The Series (TV) – 1994 (Judge J.T. 'Rope' Calder)
Santo Bugito (TV) – 1995 [the voice of Ralph]
Dobe and a Company of Heroes (TV) – 2002 [himself]
Don't Come Knocking - 2005 (Director)
Three Bad Men – 2005 (Ed Fiske)
Truce – 2005 (Dr. Peter Gannon)
The Man Who Came Back – 2008 (Judge Duke)
Mad Mad Wagon Party – 2010 (JB Scotch)

Sunday, February 28, 2016

RIP Jack Lindquist

Jack Lindquist, First President of Disneyland, Dies at 88

February 28, 2016

Jack Lindquist, a longtime Disney Parks employee who served as the first president of Disneyland and helped plot the global expansion of the Mouse’s theme park operations, died of natural causes Sunday morning at his home in Anaheim, Calif. He was 88.

Lindquist was a designated Disney Legend for his long tenure at the Anaheim theme park that is the cornerstone of Disney’s global parks and resort empire. Hired by Walt Disney himself, Lindquist served as the first advertising manager for Disneyland, which opened its doors in July 1955. Lindquist rose up the marketing ranks at Disney during the next 35 years before being named president of Disneyland in 1990.

Lindquist is a recipient of the ultimate honor for Disney insiders: a window featuring his name on Disneyland’s Main Street. It reads: “J.B. Lindquist, Honorary Mayor of Disneyland.”

During his 38 years with Disney, Lindquist did everything from market the original ticket books that guests used to ride attractions in Disneyland to serving as an integral part of the planning for Disney World, Tokyo Disneyland and what is now Disneyland Paris.

“Jack Lindquist was a Disney original in every sense,” said Robert Iger, Disney chairman-CEO in a statement. Iger noted that Lindquist always referred to his role as Disneyland president as “the best job in the world.”

Moreover, Lindquist “made sure Disneyland was the ‘Happiest Place on Earth’ for each guest who walked through the gates, setting the standard for every leader that followed,” Iger said. “Those of us who had the good fortune to know Jack will always remember the kindness, humility and dedication that made him such an important part of this company and a true Disney Legend.”

A native of Chicago, Lindquist’s family moved to Los Angeles when he was four. He worked as a child actor with credits that included serving as an extra in Hal Roach’s popular “Our Gang” series and as a kid hoofer in the 1943 Lucille Ball movie “Best Foot Forward.”

After graduating from Hollywood High School, Jack spent two years in the U.S. Air Force and then attended USC.

Lindquist rose through the marketing ranks at Disney parks, becoming VP of marketing for Disneyland and Disney World in 1972. Ten years later, he was promoted to exec VP of marketing and entertainment for all of the company’s outdoor recreation activities.

Lindquist retired from Disney on Nov. 18, 1993, a date that also marked Mickey Mouse’s 65th birthday.

Lindquist published a memoir, “In Service to the Mouse,” in 2010.

Marty Sklar, former vice chairman of Walt Disney Imagineering, called Lindquist a “great friend and mentor.” He cited his creativity in dreaming up promotions such as giving away a car to every 30,000th visitor to Disneyland to celebrate the park’s 30th anniversary in 1985. Disney handed out some 410 cars in all and reaped invaluable promotion for the park in the process.

“The title of Jack’s memoir really says it all about his professional career: ‘In Service to the Mouse.’ That’s who he was and what he did,” Sklar said. “His innovations pioneered theme park industry marketing: New Year’s Eve parties, Grad Nights for high schools, Disney Dollars and his ultimate concept to celebrate Disneyland’s 30th anniversary. … As he acknowledged in his book, ‘Keep that smile on your face, twinkle in your eye, and song in your heart. Thanks, Mickey!’ And all of us who worked with him say “Thanks, Jack!”

Born: 3/15/1927, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
Died: 2/28/2016, Anaheim, California, U.S.A.

Jack Lindquist’s westerns – actor:
Wells Fargo – 1937
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer – 1938

RIP Richard Newman

Ventura County Star
February 28, 2016

Richard Ferdinand Newman, born August 24, 1928, died peacefully, at home, after a long illness on February 11, 2016. Born in New York, raised in Washington, DC, and graduated from the School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University, he moved to Los Angeles, where he worked for Variety, the Hollywood Reporter, and became a Publicist at Columbia Studios and Paramount. In 1959, he married Pat, had three sons, and, in 1966, moved to Thousand Oaks. He wrote for television: "Restless Gun", "The Rebel ", Bonanza", "Laramie", "Wells Fargo", etc. and continued as a Unit Publicist on motion pictures featuring Steve McQueen, Fess Parker, Yvette Mimieu, and Ricardo Montalban. He was twice Vice-President of the Publicists Guild. Meanwhile, he became a Reserve Deputy Sheriff in Los Angeles County, twice named Reserve Deputy of the year, serving in West Hollywood during the heyday of the Sunset Strip.

Now with a family in Thousand Oaks and seeking a more regular schedule, he joined the new Simi Valley Police Department, where he rose quickly through the ranks, and retired as a lieutenant, though he had once served as Acting Deputy Chief. While with SVPD, he earned Master’s Degrees in Administration of Justice, Public Administration, and Educational Counseling. Considered an expert in Juvenile Justice, he was invited to address the National Chiefs of Police on that subject. This subject also inspired him to welcome 44 foster sons from Juvenile Court and a mental health treatment home program into his home.

His youth involvement led him to manage and coach in Conejo Valley Little League for 24 years, including All-Stars and CVLL Board positions. Elected to the Conejo Valley Recreation & Parks Board, he served seven years, before being elected to the Conejo Valley Unified School Board for nine years, and was twice president of each. With his counseling degree, he worked in Oak Park School District as an At-Risk Counselor in middle schools until he was off the school board, when he shifted to At-Risk children in CVUSD middle schools. He volunteered at Sequoia Middle School until 2015.

In his later years, limited by kidney dialysis, he amassed an extensive CD collection and he and Pat continued their frequent cruise travels, collecting souvenir schlock, which he loved.

In addition to wife, Pat, Richard leaves three sons: H. Robert (Samantha), Richard W. (Jodi), and Christopher W. (Tammy); and granddaughters Jessica, Ryan, Grace, Alexandra, and Joy. As Richard had so many good stories to tell, through his varied experiences, an informal memorial gathering will be held in March to share "Tales of Newman."

NEWMAN, Richard (Richard Ferdinand Newman)
Born: 8/24/1928, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 2/11/2016, Thousand Oaks, California, U.S.A.

Richard Newman’s westerns – screenwriter:
The Restless Gun (TV) – 1958, 1959
Johnny Ringo (TV) – 1959
The Rebel (TV) – 1960
Bonanza (TV) – 1961
Tales of Wells Fargo (TV) – 1961
Laramie (TV) - 1962

RIP Stefan Lisewski

Brecht-actor Stefan Lisewski has died

Salzburger Nachrichten

The actor Stefan Lisewski is dead. He died at the age of 82 years on Friday in Berlin, such as the Berliner Ensemble said on Saturday.  Lisewski, born in 1933 in Tczew (Poland), have until recently in Bertolt Brecht confessed "The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui" as Dogsborough on stage, as a spokeswoman for the ensemble of the German press agency said.

More than 500 times embodied Lisewski, who learned his craft at the State Drama School in Berlin Schöneweide, the Mac the Knife in "The Three Penny Opera".  He also acted in another Brecht plays like "Mother Courage", "Señora Carrar's Rifles", "The Mother", "Galileo", "Puntila" or "Caucasian Chalk Circle" with.

 Lisewski still played together with Helene Weigel and Ernst Busch.  It was a "great time", he told the German Press Agency on his 70th birthday.  Thanks to the many foreign guest performances he had, even before the Wall fell, "seen by the whole world".  He also stood in front of the camera: among other things, in the DEFA film "The Sorrows of Young Werther" and some "Polizeiruf 110" crime episode.

Born: 7/6/1933, Dirschau, Poland
Died: 2/26/2016, Berlni, Berlin, Germany

Stefan Lisewski’s western – actor:
Fatal Error - 1969 (Ten Eyck)

Thursday, February 25, 2016

RIP Tony Burton

By Eric Woodyard
February 25, 2016

FLINT, MI – Movie star Tony Burton died in California on Thursday afternoon, according to his younger sister Loretta "Peaches" Kelley.

Burton, a native of Flint, was best known for his role as Apollo Creed's trainer "Duke" in the Rocky series.

Kelley said he had been in and out of the hospital for the past year, but never received an official diagnosis. He was 78.

Burton had been living in California for more than 30 years and was just one of four actors, including Sylvester Stallone, to appear in the first six Rocky movies.

Due to his health, Kelley said he wasn't able to see the film "Creed," released in 2015, that was centered on the son of Rocky's rival Apollo Creed.

"There's a scene in the restaurant of that movie (Creed) where his picture is on the wall," Kelley said. "We didn't talk about (Rocky) a lot. I mean we were excited, but other people were more excited. Whenever he would come home (to Flint) other people would just come over."

Burton graduated from Flint Northern High School in 1955. He played football and made All-City and All-Valley teams as a halfback in 1954, while also leading the Vikings baseball team to a city title as a pitcher, too.

Burton won two Flint Golden Gloves light heavyweight titles in 1955 and 1957, then briefly fought professionally before starting his acting career.

"He was a heck of a ball player," said Norm Bryant, Burton's football teammate at Northern. "Tony was just a good all-around athlete."

He also had memorable scenes in the 1970s films "The Shining" and "Stir Crazy" but is mostly linked to the Rocky movies.

In 1993, he was inducted into the Greater Flint Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame.

His son, Martin, died of a heart attack at age 43 on May 8, 2014.

"It's just like someone in my own family passed," said Gerald Moore, a Northern classmate of Burton. "Whenever we got together we would reminisce on old times."

BURTON, Tony (Anthony Burton)
Born: 3/23/1937, Flint, Michigan, U.S.A.
Died: 2/25/2016, California, U.S.A.

Tony Burton’s westerns – actor:
Ransom for Alice (TV) – 1977 (Fish Man)
Bret Maverick (TV) – 1982 (Arthur)
The Magnificent Seven (TV) – 1998 (Tennessee Eban)