Monday, January 31, 2011

RIP John Barry

Famed film and stage composer John Barry passed away yesterday, January 30, of a sudden heart attack at the age of 77. He was best known for composing 11 James Bond soundtracks and helping to brand the 007 series' distinctive style. In a career spanning almost 50 years, Barry received four Grammy Awards and five Academy Awards; two for Born Free, and one each for The Lion in Winter (also won a BAFTA), Out of Africa and Dances with Wolves. Addition films include Midnight Cowboy, Born Free, and Somewhere in Time.

Barry was known for his distinct style which concentrates on strings and use of brass. He was one of the first to employ synthesizers in a film score (On Her Majesty's Secret Service), and to make wide use of pop artists and songs in Midnight Cowboy. Because Barry provided not just the main title theme but the complete soundtrack score, his music often enhanced the critical reception of a film, notably in Midnight Cowboy, Out of Africa, and Dances with Wolves.

One of Barry's best known compositions is the theme for the 1971 TV series The Persuaders!, also known as "The Unlucky Heroes", in which Tony Curtis and Roger Moore were paired as rich playboys solving crimes. The score for the series was composed by Ken Thorne. The theme went on to be a hit single in some European countries and has been re-released on collections of 1970s disco hits. The instrumental recording features Moog synthesizers. Barry also wrote the scores to a number of musicals, including Passion Flower Hotel (lyrics by Trevor Peacock), the successful West End show Billy (lyrics by Don Black) and two Broadway's, The Little Prince and the Aviator and Lolita, My Love, the latter with Alan Jay Lerner as lyricist.

During 2006, Barry was the executive producer on an album entitled Here's to the Heroes by the Australian ensemble The Ten Tenors. The album features a number of songs Barry wrote in collaboration with his lyricist friend, Don Black. Barry and Black also composed one of the songs on Shirley Bassey's 2009 comeback album, The Performance. The song entitled, "Our Time is Now", is the first written by the duo for Bassey since "Diamonds Are Forever".

In November 2008, a 300-page biography, John Barry - The Man With The Midas Touch, by Geoff Leonard, Pete Walker & Gareth Bramley, was published by Redcliffe Press, Bristol.

BARRY, John (John Barry Pendergast)
Born: 11/3/1933, York, Yorkshire and the Humber, England, U.K.
Died: 1/30/2011, New York City, New York, U.S.A.

John Barry's westerns - composer:
Monte Walsh - 1970
The White Buffalo - 1977
The Legend of the Lone Ranger - 1981
Dances with Wolves - 1990

Thursday, January 27, 2011

RIP Chief White Eagle (Basil F. Heath)

Former Tinley Resident and Kids' Host, Killed Seven Times by John Wayne, Dies in Indiana

Basil F. Heath, better known to Tinley Park residents as Chief White Eagle, died on Monday in Indiana. He was 93.

Tinley Park Patch
By Paul Dailing
January 26, 2011

Basil F. Heath, better known to legions of Tinley Park residents and decades of moviegoers as Chief White Eagle, said John Wayne killed him seven times on the screen.

The long-time Tinley Park resident died at 2:35 a.m. Monday in Woodlawn Hospital in Rochester, Ind. He was 93.

Starting with 1939's Northwest Passage, White Eagle appeared in Westerns like She Wore a Yellow Ribbon, Red River, Niagara, How the West was Won and Stage Coach. He later went on to host the "Indian Stories" segment of the long-running WTTW children's show Totem Club, which debuted in the 1960s. “Totem Club was one of the first children’s shows on WTTW and was the beginning of a long legacy of providing quality programming to the children of this community, which is at the heart of our mission, said Dan Soles, senior vice president of television content at WTTW. White Eagle also appeared on the show Wagon Train, made numerous commercials and public appearances and hosted a Native-American-centric radio show for many years.

He lived in Tinley Park from about 1975 to 1990 and was well-known to the children of the town, said long-time friend and Village Clerk Pat Rea. "He always considered himself a Tinley Parker," Rea said. White Eagle's wife, Bobbie Bear, called Rea this week to let him know the sad news. Village officials who were, as Mayor Ed Zabrocki put it, "old enough" held an impromptu memorial during Tuesday night's village board meeting. "He really made an influence on the town many years ago," Zabrocki said. "He was a fixture here and it's a sad day."

White Eagle was born on March 18, 1917, at the Iroquois Indian Grand River Reservation in Ontario, Canada, the son of Andrew Cleve and Amelina (Da Amorin) Heath. He attended McGill University in Montreal and later Oxford University in England. During World War II, he served as a liaison officer in the Office of War Information. He started his career as an iron worker and welder before becoming a stuntman and then making the transition to on-screen parts. He married Bobbie Bear in on June 29, 1977 in Grand River Reservation, Canada.

In the mid-1980s, White Eagle and Bobbie Bear accompanied Rea, Zabrocki and other village representatives on an exchange visit to Tinley Park's European sister cities. Although both White Eagle and Bobbie Bear had high positions in their respective tribes, they were unaccustomed to the reception they received from the European nobility, Rea said. "When they went to Europe, he was always given princely deference and his wife was automatically put in with the princesses, which, by the way, flabbergasted her," Rea said, laughing. Basil "Chief White Eagle" Heath is survived by: wife, Roberta “Bobbi Bear” Heath, Rochester, Ind.; daughter, Eunice Madeline Heath Collard, North Chichester, Essex, England; adopted tribal son, Kenneth “Lone Eagle”, Knox, Ind.; granddaughter, Laura Marie West, Dagenham, Essex, England; great-grandchildren, Connor Ben West and Kai Porter West, Dagenham, Essex, England; sister, Mildred Burgemeyer, Converse, Texas, and several nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by daughter Lauraine Heath and sisters Sylvia Schroeder and Valerie Peterson.

Private services will be observed. Memorial contributions may be made to the Chief White Eagle Memorial Fund. Arrangements by Zimmerman Bros. Funeral Home, Rochester, Indiana. Online condolences may be sent to or in the comments field below this article.

Born: 3/18/1917, Grand River Reservation, Ontario, Canada
Died: 1/24/2011, Rochester, Indiana, U.S.A.

Chief White Eagle's westerns - actor:
Stagecoach - 1939 (Indian)
Northwest Passage - 1940 (Indian)
Red River - 1948 (Indian)
She Wore a Yellow Ribbon - 1949 (Indian)
Wagon Train (TV) - 1957 (Indian)
How the West Was Won - 1962 (Indian)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

RIP Stanley Frazen

Stanley Frazen, A.C.E.
August 15, 1919 - January 23, 2011

Picture editor and former President of the Motion Picture Editors Guild Stanley Frazen, A.C.E., passed away January 23, 2011. Lucky to live a full 91 years, he had a life of success, happiness, family, wisdom and love.

A pioneer in the early days of Television, Stanley was a messenger at Warner Bros. at the age of 18. He enlisted in the First Motion Picture Unit of the Army Air Corps in World War II, launching his film editing career. Editing for a span over 50 years, Stanley was Post-Production Supervisor and Supervising Editor at McCadden Productions, working on shows in the 1950s such as Burns and Allen, I Married Joan, The Bob Cummings Show, People's Choice, and The Jack Benny Show.

Stanley became a Commercial Director and directed commercials for Carnation, Revlon, Chevrolet, Ford, Kellogg’s and Purina, which led to his forming his own production company and producing the feature Man-Trap for Paramount Studios.

Always an editor at heart, he continued to edit in the 1960s, ‘70s and ‘80s on television series such as The Beverly Hillbillies, My Favorite Martian, The Monkees, Get Smart, Columbo, Charlie's Angels and The Fall Guy, to name a few. Later, he was an editor on the films Young Doctors in Love, The Milagro Beanfield War and The Amityville Horror.

A past President of the Motion Picture Editors Guild in 1979 and a longtime board member, as well as the America Cinema Editors (ACE), Stanley loved editing and training young people in the profession. Many famous editors have gone on to great careers after passing through his editing room.

Born in Chicago, Stanley moved with his mother to Los Angeles at a very young age. He spent a lot of time with his grandparents, growing up in Boyle Heights during the Depression. Always work-oriented, he was a paper boy at the age of ten. He went to Roosevelt High School and was on the track team. His hobbies were golf and watching sports, and he was a voracious reader.

He is survived by his wife Diane Frazen; children Nancy Frazen, Marcy Frazen Toschi and Robert Frazen; grandchildren Matthew, Griffin, Spencer and Amy; and first wife Frances Frazen.

Stanley had a strong will to live and a passion for life. He was a loving and generous husband, father and grandfather, always wanting his family around him. His love for his family was endless and he will be missed so much.

Funeral Services will be held Wednesday, January 26, 2011, at 11:00 a.m. at Mount Sinai Memorial Park on Forest Lawn Drive in Los Angeles.

Donations can be made to the Motion Picture & Television Country House and Hospital.

FRAZEN, Stanley
Born: 8/15/1919, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
Died: 1/23/2011, Woodland Hills, California, U.S.A.
Stanley Frazen's westerns - film editor:
The Lone Ranger (TV) - 1949
Apache Chief - 1949
The Guns of Will Sonnett (TV) - 1967
Hardcase (TV) - 1972
Marie Ann -1978

RIP Bernd Eichinger

German Movie Producer Bernd Eichinger Dies

German movie producer, director Bernd Eichinger dies in Los Angeles of heart attack at age 61.

German movie producer, director and screenplay writer Bernd Eichinger, who produced well-known films "The Neverending Story" and "Downfall," has died. He was 61.

Film production firm Constantin Film AG said in a statement Tuesday that Eichinger suffered a deadly heart attack Monday night during a dinner with family and friends in Los Angeles.

One of Eichinger's recent successful productions was "Downfall," for which he also wrote the screenplay. The movie depicts the last days of Nazi Germany in Adolf Hitler's bunker and was nominated for an Academy Award in 2005.

Eichinger was a major Constantin shareholder and one of the firm's leading executives. He also produced "The Name of the Rose" and "The House of the Spirits."

Though there had been rumors Eichinger might be in poor health after he failed to attend the Bavarian Film Awards earlier this year, his death comes a shock.

Eichinger is survived by his wife Katja, a film journalist and daughter Nina, a well-known TV personality and jury member on the German version of American Idol.

Born: 4/11/1949, Neuberg an der Donau, Bavaria, Germany
Died: 1/24/2011, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Bernd Eichinger's western - producer:
The Shoe of Manitou - 2001

RIP Bruce Gordon

Bruce Gordon passed away on January 20, 2011, after a lengthy illness.

He was born in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, on February 1, 1916. He was a stage, movie and television actor during a career spanning five decades, making his first professional appearance on Broadway in Arsenic and Old Lace with Boris Karloff.

Mr. Gordon performed in over 400 live major network television productions as well as numerous television movies. His starring roles in television series included four years with The Untouchables, in which he played the infamous Frank Nitti.

In later years, he chose to live in Santa Fe, and came out of retirement to appear in two stage productions at the College of Santa Fe.

A private family memorial will be held in Big Sur, California.


Born: 2/1/1916, Fitchburg, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Died: 1/20/2011, Santa Fe, New Mexico, U.S.A.

Bruce Gordon's westerns - actor:
Zane Grey Theater (TV) - 1957 (cattle buyer)
Tombstone Territory (TV) - 1957 (Jake Hoyt)
Have Gun - Will Travel (TV) - 1957, 1959 (Louis Dryden, Decker)
Trackdown (TV) - 1958 (Steve Marriner)
Jefferson Drum (TV) - 1958 (Juan Cavanaugh)
Man Without a Gun (TV) - 1958
Northwest Passage (TV) - 1958 (Captain Hugo Marten)
U.S. Marshal (TV) - 1958 (Myers)
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1958, 1960 (Jed Gunter, Red Samples, Sloat)
The Californians (TV) - 1959 (Charles Savage)
Curse of the Undead - 1959 (Buffer)
Johnny Ringo (TV) - 1959 (Max Healey)
Bat Masterson (TV) - 1959 (Jason Medford)
Have Gun - Will Travel (TV) - 1959 (Sergeant Decker)
Bonanza (TV) - 1959, 1965, 1970 (Chief Winnemucca, Dan Bronson, Scott)
Riverboat (TV) - 1960 (Garnett)
Hotel de Paree (TV) - 1960 (Tom Reddiger)
Laramie (TV) - 1960 (Major Cantrell)
Tales of Wells Fargo (TV) - 1960 (Garner, Carl Orleans)
Stagecoach West (TV) - 1960 (Leo Calloway)
Sugarfoot (TV) - 1960, 1961 (Elias Stone)
Outlaws (TV) - 1960, 1961 (Mercer)
Maverick (TV) - 1961 (Rath Lawson)
Death Valley Days (TV) - 1961 (Claypool)
Rider on a Dead Horse - 1962 (Barney Senn)
Machismo: 40 Graves for 40 Guns - 1971 (Burt)
Timerider: The Adventure of Lyle Swann - 1982 (Earl)

Monday, January 24, 2011

RIP Hellmut Lange

Hellmut Lange, the German actor has died at the age of 87. Lange who suffered from dementia died on 13, January, his wife, Irene Lange said. He has long been known for among other things for his role in the TV four-part series "The Leatherstocking Tales,".

Lange was known from many television plays and series on ARD and ZDF. Among his best known roles include the TV Leatherstocking four-part series "The Leatherstocking Tales," (1969). He also had many viewers as the host of the quiz series "Do you know movies?" (1971-1981). Unforgettable is his long representation of the scar-faced, professional crises ridden art shooter appearing in the circus series "Somersault" (1968).

With his distinctive deep voice, he dubbed many movie stars and, according to his wife, he has also recorded radio plays very much like the MDR-production "The King David Report" by Stefan Heym. His last TV appearance was as investigative commission head Herwegh Sat.1 in the film "Ferry to Death".

LANGE, Hellmut
Born: 1/19/1923, Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Died: 1/13/2011, Berlin, Belin, Germany
Hellmut Lange's western - actor:
The Leatherstocking Tales (TV) - 1969 (Natahaniel 'Nat' Bumpo)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

RIP Jack LaLanne

MORRO BAY, Calif. — Fitness guru Jack LaLanne, who inspired television viewers to trim down and pump iron decades before exercise became a national obsession, has died at age 96.

His agent Rick Hersh says LaLanne died of respiratory failure due to pneumonia Sunday afternoon at his home in Morro Bay on California’s central coast.

Hersh says Lalanne ate healthy and exercised every day of his life up until the end.

LaLanne credited fitness with transforming his life as a teen, and he worked over the next eight decades to transform others’ lives, too.

He said, "The only way you can hurt the body is not use it." LaLanne’s workout show was a television staple from the 1950s to ’70s. He maintained a youthful physique into his 80s.

LaLANNE, Jack (Jack Francoise Henri LaLanne)
Born: 9/26/1914, San Francisco, California, U.S.A.
Died: 1/23/2011, Morro Bay, California, U.S.A.

Jack LaLanne's western - actor:
More Wild Wild West (TV) - 1980 (Physical Fitness Trainer)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

RIP Don Kirshner

Don Kirshner, Rock Producer and Promoter, Dies at 76


Don Kirshner, who guided the course of Brill Building and bubblegum pop in the 1950s and ’60s as a music publisher and promoter, and later served as an Ed Sullivan for 1970s artists like Bruce Springsteen, Pink Floyd, Kiss and the Ramones with his weekly program “Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert” on television, died on Monday in Boca Raton, Fla. He was 76. The cause was heart failure.

Born in the Bronx, Mr. Kirshner entered the music business in the mid-1950s, writing commercial jingles with Bobby Darin, whom he had met in a Washington Heights candy shop as Robert Cassotto. When Mr. Darin went on to fame as a singer in 1958 with “Splish Splash,” Mr. Kirshner assumed a powerful role behind the scenes with his publishing company Aldon, which he founded with Al Nevins.

Aldon published songs by many of the classic songwriters of the Brill Building era, like Neil Sedaka and the teams of Carole King and Gerry Coffin (“Will You Love Me Tomorrow,” “The Loco-Motion”) and Barry Mann and Cynthia Weil (“You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” written with Phil Spector). As a producer and impresario, Mr. Kirshner was also responsible for putting together the songs for two manufactured pop groups on television: the Monkees and the Archies. Mr. Nevins died in 1965.

From 1973 to 1981 Mr. Kirshner was the producer and host of “Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert” on ABC, a live show that opened with a performance by the Rolling Stones and had appearances by Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers, David Bowie and many others.

He is survived by his wife, Sheila; his children Ricky and Daryn; and five grandchildren.

KIRSHNER, Don (Donald Kirshner)
Born: 4/17/1934, Bronx, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 1/17/2011, Boca Raton, Florida, U.S.A.

Don Kirshner's westerns - producer, screenwriter, composer, consultant:
Scalplock (TV) - 1966 [music consultant]
The Kowboys (TV) - 1970 [producer, screenwriter, composer]

Sunday, January 16, 2011

RIP Augusto Algueró

Spanish Composer Augusto Alguero Dies

MADRID – Spanish composer, arranger and orchestra director Augusto Alguero died Sunday in his sleep at his home in Torremolinos on the southern Costa del Sol, the Spanish General Society of Authors and Publishers, or SGAE, said. He was 76.

The funeral chapel for the composer, who was a member of the SGAE Board of Directors, will be set up on Monday at the Madrid headquarters of the SGAE so that the public may say their final goodbyes to one of the “most important (figures) in (Spanish) popular music,” the organization said. “Music is the most universal language that exists and I have devoted my entire life to it,” Alguero said some time back.

Alguero was known for composing important pieces that now belong to the collective imagination, including “Penelope” (Juan Manuel Serrat), “Noelia” (Nino Bravo), “Tombola” (Marisol) and “La chica ye-ye” (Concha Velasco).

In addition, he wrote the musical scores for a number of films, including “El ruiseñor de las cumbres,” with Joselito, and “Zampo y yo,” with Ana Belen; and he collaborated on about 50 theater works, among which were “Mama, quiero ser artista,” with Concha Velasco.

In 1961, Alguero married popular Spanish actress Carmen Sevilla, but the couple separated 10 years later after having a son. Alguero, who in 1986 married Natividad Benito, was born in Barcelona on Feb. 23, 1934, and he combined his musical studies at the Municipal Conservatory there with the study of medicine.

He began his musical career in the early 1950s at age 16. The great majority of his songs were composed using lyrics by Antonio Guijarro, sung by famous Spanish artists and became hits, making Alguero very popular in Spain and Latin America. In all, during the course of his career, he wrote more than 500 songs and about 200 musical scores for movies and television.

ALGUERO, Augusto (Augusto Algueró Dasco)
Born: 2/23/1934, Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Died: 1/16/2011 Torremolinos, Málaga, Spain

Augusto Algueró’s western - composer:
Juanito - 1960

RIP Herb Mitchell

Herbert L. Mitchell Jr., 73, of Blue Hill and Los Angeles, died peacefully at his daughter Kathy Hally’s home, surrounded by his loving first family, on Jan. 4, 2011. He was born June 18, 1937, in Bar Harbor, the son of Estella Mae Bourgeois Mitchell and Herbert L. Mitchell, Sr.

He attended Bar Harbor schools, and was an altar boy at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church throughout his school years. He attended the University of Maine and Maine Maritime Academy, eventually becoming an investment banker. Coaxed by his first wife into becoming a member of The Ellsworth Players in the late ’60s, Herb discovered his calling as an actor, which he later developed into a very successful acting career in Los Angeles, appearing in numerous television shows and films.

He is survived by his first wife, Scarlet Kinney of Surry, and their children, Sharon Mitchell Kassity and husband, Chris, of Carson City, Nev., Kelly A. Mitchell of Penobscot, Kathleen Mitchell Hally and husband, Brian, of Blue Hill, and Gerard B. Mitchell of Los Angeles. He leaves behind four grandchildren of this family, Courtney and Tierney Hally of Blue Hill, and Lucas and Kate Kassity of Carson City, Nev. He is also survived by his daughter, Kaitlin Mitchell of Andover Mass., from his second marriage to Janet Ahearn, and by his two brothers, Gerald Mitchell, of Seattle, Wash., and Louis Mitchell, of Los Angeles.

Herb’s family wishes to thank Hancock County HomeCare and Hospice and Dr. Tom Bugby for their attentive care and guidance. We also wish to thank Nadine A. Kassity, MBA, RN, and Jamieson E. Jones, MD, for their book “First Heal Thyself,” which was a great help to the family as they dealt with Herb’s passing.

A funeral Mass will be held 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 7, 2011, at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Ellsworth, followed by a reception in the church hall. A private burial will be held in the spring. A service of Bragdon-Kelley Funeral Home, Ellsworth. Condolences may be sent at

MITCHELL, Herb (Herbert L. Mitchell, Jr.)
Born: 6/18/1937, Bar Harbor, Maine, U.S.A.
Died: 1/4/2011, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Herb Mitchell's westerns - actor:
Little House on the Prairie (TV) - 1981 (workman)
Father Murphy (TV) - 1981, 1982 (guard, pallbearer)

Saturday, January 15, 2011

RIP Toshiyuki Hosokawa

Prolific stage, film, and television actor Toshiyuki Hosokawa passed away on Friday, January 14 at 5:24 a.m. due to acute subdural hematoma. He was 70. According to his family, he had suffered a concussion when he fell in his living room on January 12 and was taken to a hospital in Tokyo. Although he is best known for his stage and film work, he also voice-acted in the Ashita no Joe anime films.

Hosokawa was born in Fukuoka in 1940, and joined the Bungakuza theatrical troupe after he left Gakushuin University. Alongside actress Nana Kinomi, he starred in the Japanese production of the musical Show Girl for 15 years starting in 1970. He also appeared in such films as Yonige Yahonpo 2 and Radio Time (Welcome Back, Mr. McDonald). He tried his hand in voice-acting when he played Tohru Rikiishi, a major rival of the title character in the anime films based on the classic boxing manga Ashita no Joe. Since 2004, he served as a professor at the Osaka University of Arts.

HOSOKAWA, Toshiyuki
Born: 1940, Fukuoka, Japan
Died: 1/14/2011, Tokyo, Japan

Toshiyuki Hosokawa's western - actor:
New Morning of Billy the Kid - 1986 (Mystery Man)

Friday, January 14, 2011

RIP Paul Picerni

'The Untouchables' Star Paul Picerni Dies

He played Agent Lee Hobson from 1960-63 on the ABC gangster series.

Paul Picerni, who played Eliot Ness’ right-hand man on TV’s The Untouchables for three seasons, died Wednesday at his home in Llano, California. He was 88.

The news was announced Friday by author Tom Weaver, who helped Picerni pen his 2007 autobiography, Steps to Stardom.

Picerni portrayed Agent Lee Hobson opposite Robert Stack from 1960-63 on ABC’s The Untouchables, the gangster series set in Prohibition-era Chicago. His extensive TV work also included guest spots on such shows as Dragnet, Batman, Starsky & Hutch, Gunsmoke and Kojak, whose star, Telly Savalas, was his best friend for almost three decades.

The Corona, N.Y., native also played the romantic lead in the horror classic House of Wax (1953) starring Vincent Price as part of a seven-year contract Picerni had at Warner Bros.

A bombardier in World War II — he was on the plane that destroyed the bridge made famous in The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957) — Picerni also appeared in supporting roles in the war films Twelve O’Clock High (1949), Breakthrough (1950), Operation Pacific (1951) and To Hell and Back (1955). He also appeared opposite Errol Flynn in Mara Maru (1952).

Picerni served as the halftime master of ceremonies for Los Angeles Rams home games for decades before the NFL team moved to Anaheim after the 1979 season.

PICERNI, Paul (Paul Vincent Picerni)
Born: 12/1/1922, Corona, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 1/12/2011, Llano, California, U.S.A.

Paul Picerni's westerns -actor:
Saddle Tramp - 1950 (Denver)
Fort Worth - 1951 (Joe Castro)
Cattle Town - 1952 (Pepe)
The Charge at Feather River - 1953 (sergeant)
Riding Shotgun - 1954 (Bob Purdee)
The Bounty Hunter - 1954 (Jud)
Stories of the Century (TV) - 1955 (Rube Burrows)
Circus Boy (TV) - 1957 (Julio Gaetano)
Tales of the Texas Rangers (TV) - 1957 (Philip Conzog)
Broken Arrow (TV) - 1957 (Zele)
Boots and Saddles (TV) - 1957, 1958 (Private Grimes)
Colt .45 (TV) - 1957, 1959, 1960 (Quito, Jose, Duke Blain)
Return to Warbow - 1958 (Deputy Sheriff)
26 Men (TV) - 1958 (Ranger Ben Thorpe)
Zorro (TV) - 1958 (Pedro Murrietta)
Maverick (TV) - 1958 (Rene Gireaux)
The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin (TV) - 1959 (Jaffar Husein)
The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (TV) - 1959 (Chief Bullhead)
Bonanza (TV) - 1960 (Sanchez)
Rawhide (TV) - 1960 (Bahari)
Sugarfoot (TV) - 1960 (Gian-Paolo)
Shotgun Slade (TV) - 1960 (Quinn)
The Rebel (TV) - 1960 (Clee, Manuel, Lee Ricker)
The Big Valley (TV) - 1966 (Peterson)
The Virginian (TV) - 1967 (Parks)
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1967, 1973, 1974 (William McGee, Ganns, Grimes, Marshal)
The Scalphunters - 1968 (Frank)
Lancer (TV) - 1968 (Provost Marshal)
Landraiders - 1969 (Carney, Arturo)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

RIP Peter Hobbs

After a brief illness, Peter passed away peacefully at his home in Santa Monica surrounded by family. Born in Etretat, France, to Dr. Austin L. Hobbs and Mabel Foote Hobbs, Peter was raised in New York City, attended Solebury School in PA, and graduated in Drama from Bard College. In World War II he served in Europe as a Sergeant in Combat Engineering and fought at the Battle of the Bulge. Peter was especially proud of his role in safeguarding the lives of the men in his platoon. Peter enjoyed a 50-year career as an actor in theater, TV, and film. He played on Broadway (notably, "Teahouse of the August Moon" and "Billy Budd"); on TV (from his role as Peter Ames in "Secret Storm" from 1954 to 1962, to "Perry Mason", "The Dick Van Dyke Show,"The Andy Griffith Show, "Bonanza,""All in the Family, "The Odd Couple," "Streets of San Francisco," "Happy Days," "Barney Miller," "Lou Grant," "M*A*S*H," "Knots Landing," "L.A. Law," and dozens more); and in film ("Sleeper," "The Man with Two Brains," "9 to 5," "Any Which Way You Can," "Andromeda Strain," "In the Mood," and "The Lady in Red"). Peter was a devoted husband and loving father, a good and generous friend and neighbor, an amiable, passionate and good- humored man who loved life, all kinds of people, progressive politics, reading, acting, spirited conversation, laughter, and a cocktail or two now and then. He was a vibrant man who, whether you knew him on the screen or in life, put a smile on your face and joy in your heart. "Point of order!" as he liked to say: You gave them a good show, Peter! Peter is survived by his wife of 28 years, Carolyn Adams Hobbs; three daughters, Anna Hobbs of Barcelona, Jennifer McVeigh of Prospect, Maine, and Nancy Hobbs of New York City; two stepsons, Mark and Adam Richards of Santa Monica; and six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

HOBBS, Peter
Born: 1/18/1918, Etretat, Seine-Maritime, France
Died: 1/2/2011, Santa Monica, California, U.S.A.

Peter Hobbs' westerns - actor:
The Big Valley (TV) - 1967, 1968 (Marshal Steve Macklin, Cliff Hyatt)
Bonanza (TV) - 1972 (Judge Henry Hull)
Belle Starr (TV) - (Jenkins)
Little House on the Prairie (TV) - 1980, 1981 (Attorney Arthur Davis)

RIP David Nelson

'Ozzie and Harriet's' David Nelson dies

He was the last surviving cast member of iconic show

David Nelson, who grew up in front of America in "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet," died Jan. 11 in Century City, Calif., of complications from colon cancer. He was 74.

Nelson was the last surviving member of the Nelsons TV family: actor-bandleader Ozzie; his singing wife, Harriet Hilliard; and his teen-idol younger brother, Rick. The show, which originated on radio in 1952 as "Here Come the Nelsons," ran for 320 episodes from 1952 to 1966 as "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet" on ABC. On the radio show, the boys were portrayed by pros, but they persuaded their parents to allow them to play themselves for the smallscreen.

In the show's later years, David Nelson also directed some episodes. His film career included roles on 1957's "Peyton Place," 1959's "The Remarkable Mr. Pennypacker," "The Big Circus" (for which he won critical acclaim as a homicidal trapeze artist) and "Day of the Outlaw," 1962's "The Big Show," l965's "Love and Kisses," 1978's "Up in Smoke" and 1990's "Cry-Baby."

He also starred with Hilliard in 1976's "Smash-Up on Interstate 5."

Smallscreen roles included "The Love Boat," "Hondo," and telepics "A Family for Joe," "Swing out Sweet Land" and "High School USA."

Nelson also had a career as a director and a producer. Besides directing eps of "Ozzie and Harriet" he helmed episodes of "O.K. Crackerby," "Adam-12" and "Ozzie's Girls." Feature credits included 1969's "Childish Things," 1982's "Death Screams," 1983's "Last Plane Out" and 1984's "A Rare Breed."

He produced "Ozzie's Girls," "Last Plane Out" and "Easy to Be Free."

In 2006, he was nommed for a TV Land Award for "Ozzie and Harriet" and received a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

Survivors include his wife of 36 years, Yvonne; four sons and a daughter; seven grandchildren; three nephews; Matthew, Gunnar and Sam; and a niece, Tracy.

NELSON, David Oswald
Born: 10/24/1936, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 1/11/2011, Century City, California, U.S.A.

David Nelson's westerns - actor:
Day of the Outlaw - 1959 (Gene)
Hondo (TV) - 1967 (Jeff)

RIP Christopher Trumbo

Christopher Trumbo, the son of Dalton Trumbo, wrote TV episodes for series such as 'Ironside,' 'Quincy, M.E.,' and 'Falcon Crest.' He was an expert on the blacklist and wrote a play, 'Trumbo: Red, White & Blacklisted,' based on his father's letters.

Christopher Trumbo, the screen and television writer son of Oscar-winning screenwriter Dalton Trumbo, who was blacklisted and imprisoned during the Red Scare as a member of the Hollywood 10, has died. He was 70.

Trumbo died Saturday from complications of kidney cancer while in hospice care at his home in Ojai, said his sister, Mitzi Trumbo.

During a more than 40-year writing career launched in 1967, Trumbo wrote episodes of TV series such as "Ironside," "Quincy, M.E.," and "Falcon Crest" — as well as co-writing the 1973 crime drama "The Don Is Dead," starring Anthony Quinn; and the 1975 crime drama "Brannigan," starring John Wayne.

He also was known as an authority on the blacklist era, a specialty that grew from his firsthand knowledge.

That most notably included writing a two-character play based on his father's letters, "Trumbo: Red, White & Blacklisted," which tells the story of Dalton Trumbo's life and the blacklist through the words in his correspondence.

An off-Broadway production of the play, directed by Peter Askin, opened at the Westside Theatre in 2003 with Nathan Lane as Trumbo and Gordon MacDonald as the narrator.

The play ran a little over a year and boasted a string of familiar names who took over the Trumbo role, including Brian Dennehy, Gore Vidal, Richard Dreyfuss, F. Murray Abraham and Chris Cooper. A national tour of the play starring Dennehy followed.

Dalton Trumbo's letters also were the basis of the Christopher Trumbo-written and Askin-directed "Trumbo," a 2007 film that was part documentary and part performance by actors such as Lane, Dennehy, Paul Giamatti, Liam Neeson and Donald Sutherland.

"Actors love the language in those letters; that's why we were able to attract them," Askin told The Times on Tuesday. "This was great material for actors to work with."

Askin said Christopher Trumbo "was a passionate, articulate spokesman for the time of the blacklist."

"He learned about it from his father and experienced it, and he was absolutely articulate and vigilant in everything he did being an accurate interpretation of what that time was like and the principles his father stood for," Askin said. And Trumbo "was funny the way his father was," he said.

"You could tell he had absorbed his father's biting sense of humor and independence of spirit," he said. "You really felt like you were in his father's world when you were listening to Chris."

Born Sept. 25, 1940, in Los Angeles, Trumbo was 7 when his father was subpoenaed by the House Un-American Activities Committee as part of its investigation into "communist infiltration of the motion picture industry."

As one of the Hollywood 10 who refused to cooperate with the committee by challenging its right to ask questions about their political beliefs, Dalton Trumbo and the others were blacklisted by the studio owners.

After he and the others were indicted for contempt of Congress, tried, convicted and sentenced to prison, Dalton Trumbo spent 10 months in a federal prison in Kentucky.

Released in 1951, he and his family moved to Mexico City with the family of blacklisted screenwriter Hugo Butler. After nearly two years in Mexico, the Trumbos returned and settled in Highland Park.

The three Trumbo children felt the effects of the Red Scare and their father's notoriety.

"My younger sister was thrown out of the Blue Birds [young Campfire Girls] for being undesirable," Trumbo said in a 1996 Associated Press interview. "When I went to high school, the authorities tried to deprive me of one academic award because of my family background.

"Feelings about my father were strong enough to get a reaction from schools, private organizations and individuals who sent hate mail. That was the tenor of the times."

After his release from prison, Dalton Trumbo resumed writing under a variety of pseudonyms.

"He used at least 13 different names and had an elaborate bank account system to protect himself and the producers from being detected," Christopher Trumbo told The Times in 1989. "When I was 16 or 17, I was running around town with sometimes $10,000 or $20,000 in cash and checks, depositing them under these different names."

In 1957, Dalton Trumbo's story for "The Brave One," which he wrote under the name Robert Rich, won an Oscar.

For Dalton Trumbo, the blacklist ended when Kirk Douglas, the star and executive producer of "Spartacus," gave him screen credit under his own name on the film, which was released in 1960, the same year that producer-director Otto Preminger's "Exodus" also gave Trumbo screen credit on that film.

Christopher Trumbo graduated from Columbia University in 1963, after taking off a year to work as an assistant director on "Exodus." He later worked as associate producer and assistant director on the 1971 anti-war drama "Johnny Got His Gun," which was written and directed by his father. "Christopher's use of thought and language was unsurpassed," said Michael Butler, the son of Hugo Butler and Christopher Trumbo's writing partner in the late '60s and early '70s. "Unlike most of us in the '60s, Christopher was dedicated to always doing the right thing," Butler said. "He was an extraordinary moral and ethical human being. His path was always one of tremendous rectitude."

Trumbo, who was frequently interviewed about the Hollywood blacklist and appeared in several documentaries on the subject, was working on a memoir/history of the blacklist at the time of his death.

Besides his sister Mitzi, Trumbo is survived by his wife, Nancy Escher; and his other sister, Nikola Trumbo.

TRUMBO, Christopher
Born: 9/25/1940, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 1/8/2011, Ojai, California, U.S.A.

Christopher Trumbo's western - screenwriter:
Bearcats! (TV) - 1971

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

RIP Margaret Whiting

Margaret Whiting, The Voice of 'Moonlight In Vermont,' Dies

Margaret Whiting, one of the most popular and distinctive voices of American popular song died Monday at the Actors' Fund Home in Englewood, N.J. She was 86 years old. Whiting introduced such standards as "That Old Black Magic" and "Moonlight in Vermont."

Whiting was born into musical royalty. Her father was composer Richard Whiting, who wrote the music for a number of pop hits including "Hooray For Hollywood" and "On The Good Ship Lollipop." Her home became the royal court for some of the biggest songwriters of the 20th century — Johnny Mercer and Harold Arlen. To her, Jerome Kern was "Uncle Jerry."

Whiting began singing when she was a toddler. When lyricists were working on songs with her Dad and wanted to hear how they might sound, the popular refrain was, "Get the kid."

Her father died when she was 13 and Mercer took care of her. She became one of the first artists signed to Capitol Records, founded by Mercer in 1942. She scored her first hit that year with Mercer's "That Old Black Magic." She was 17 years old.

Other hits quickly followed: "Moonlight in Vermont" with Billy Butterfield's Orchestra; "It Might As Well Be Spring" with Paul Weston; "Baby, It's Cold Outside," a duet with Mercer. She landed hits under her own name as well: "A Tree In the Meadow" and "Slippin' Around," one of a series of duets with country singer Jimmy Wakely.

Whiting continued performing in concert and at cabarets into her 80s. She was also a much-interviewed primary source on American popular song.

WHITING, Margaret
Born: 7/22/1924, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.A.
Died: 1/10/2011, Englewood, New Jersey, U.S.A.
Margaret Whiting's western - actress:
Colt .45 (TV) - 1960 (Vinnie Berkeley)

Monday, January 10, 2011

RIP Del Reisman

Veteran TV writer and former Writers Guild of America West president Del Reisman died Saturday in Toluca Lake of cardiac arrest after a brief illness. He was 86.

Reisman served as president from 1991-93 and was VP from 1987-91 and a member of the board of directors from 1979-87. He also chaired three negotiating committees, was a chairman or member of more than 20 other guild committees and was also a longtime member of the board of trustees of the Writers Guild Foundation.

Reisman was awarded the WGA West's Morgan Cox Award in 1999 for his service to the guild.

"Del was a wonderful man, a staunch defender of writers, and a tremendous friend whose many years of selfless service to the Guild have improved working lives for thousands of writers and their families. He will be missed," said WGA West President John Wells

American Film Institute Dean Robert Mandel said, "Over the past ten years, our Fellows have benefitted from Del's exceptional teaching, support, and compassion as they prepare to dive into the scary Hollywood waters. Del was much beloved and he will be dearly missed."

During World War II, Reisman served with the U.S. Army Air Forces from 1942-45 and was trained as a bombardier on the B-17 Flying Fortress. He flew 35 combat missions, mostly over Northern Europe, and achieved the rank of First Lieutenant.

Reisman launched his writing career during the 1950s on such shows as "NBC Matinee Theater" and served as story editor for "Playhouse 90" and "Twilight Zone." Writing and co-writing credits include "Peyton Place," "Cagney & Lacey," "Charlie's Angels," "Magnum P.I.," "Scarecrow & Mrs. King," "The Streets of San Francisco," "Cannon," "Little House on the Prairie," "Lou Grant," "The Six Million Dollar Man," "Flamingo Road," "The Blue Knight," "Banacek," "Harry O," "Kung Fu," "Ghost Story," "Airwolf" and "The Yellow Rose."

His screen credits include 1973's "The Take" (co-written with Franklin Coen, based on a novel by G.F. Newman).

He was a faculty member at the American Film Institute and a longtime member of the Library of Congress' National Film Preservation Board. Last May, Reisman volunteered to participate in the Writers Guild Foundation's inaugural Veteran Writers Workshop.

Reisman is survived by his niece, Karen Schneider, who resides in Washington D.C., and half-sister Penny Chidgey, who resides in Australia.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made in Reisman's name to the Writers Guild Foundation. Memorial services are pending.

Born: 4/13/1924, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 1/8/2011, Toluca Lake, California, U.S.A.

Del Reisman's westerns - associate producer, screenwriter:
Hotel de Paree (TV) - 1959-1960 [associate producer]
Rawhide (TV) - 1964-1965 [associate producer]
Kung Fu (TV) - 1973 [screenwriter]
Little Houe on the Prairie (TV) - 1979 [screenwriter]

RIP Juanito Navarro

Spanish actor Juanito Navarro, one of the oldest members of Real Madrid, died Monday at age 86 following a heart attack, according to Europa Press and reported by a relative. Juan Navarro Rubinos was born in Madrid, Spain on July 8, 1926 and passed away on January 10, 2011 at his home in Madrid. He was part of the Real Madrid soccer club sinceJanuary 1, 1939, and was a convention delegate for years and a partner for 36. Navarro studied to become an aeronautical engineer before he turned to acting, appearing in over 60 films and TV appearances from 1968 until his last TV appearance in 2005. Juanito Navarro appeared in one Euro-western as Blackandecker in “Al este del oeste” in 1984. He leaves two daughters and his funeral will be held Tuesday at the Almudena cemetery.

NAVARRO, Juanito (Juan Navarro Rubinos)
Born: 7/8/1926, Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Died: 1/10/2011, Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Juanito Navarro's western - actor:
Al este del oeste - 1984 (Blackandecker)

Friday, January 7, 2011

RIP Aron Kincaid

Aron Kincaid dies at 70; actor appeared in 1960s 'beach' movies

The Los Angeles native appeared in 'The Girls on the Beach' and 'The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini.' He later had careers as a model and an artist.

By Dennis McLellan, Los Angeles Time

January 8, 2011

Aron Kincaid, an actor who appeared in 1960s "beach" movies such as "The Girls on the Beach" and "The Ghost in the Invisible Bikini" and later had careers as a model and an artist, has died. He was 70.

Kincaid, who lived in Beverly Hills, died of heart-related complications Thursday at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, said his longtime friend Rodney Kemerer.

The tall and handsome Kincaid was a UCLA student when he was spotted in a Los Angeles stage production by a casting agent and signed to a contract with Universal. That led to a regular role in the final season of the sitcom "Bachelor Father" in 1962 — as Warren Dawson, the junior partner of John Forsythe's Hollywood attorney Bentley Gregg. Dawson becomes engaged to Gregg's niece, Kelly, played by Noreen Corcoran.

Kincaid later appeared with Corcoran in the 1965 comedy "The Girls on the Beach" and had roles in "Beach Ball" and "Ski Party," and made what was billed as a "guest appearance" in "Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine" — as well as appearing in "The Happiest Millionaire, "The Proud and the Damned" and other movies. Kincaid, who also made guest appearances on series such as “The Beverly Hillbillies and "Get Smart," moved to San Francisco in the early 1970s and launched a successful career as a model. He also had a 20-year voice-over career in hundreds of commercials and did voice work on animated TV series such as "Smurfs," "Jonny Quest" and "The Transformers."

He was born Norman Neale Williams II in Los Angeles on June 15, 1940. His father, a second lieutenant in the Army Air Forces, died during World War II. His mother remarried and moved to Oakland, where Kincaid graduated from high school. After graduating from UCLA in 1962, he enlisted in the Coast Guard Reserve. As an artist, Kincaid used the name N.N. Williams II. He sold his landscapes and seascapes through galleries in Laguna Beach. He had no immediate survivors.

KINCAID, Aaron (Norman Neale Williams, Jr.)
Born: 6/15/1940, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 1/6/2011, Westwood, California, U.S.A.
Aron Kincaid's westerns - actor:
Death Valley Days (TV) - 1968 (Char Blanchard)
The Proud and the Damned - 1972 (Ike)

RIP Herman Groves

Groves, Herman John

September 21, 1927 - December 5, 2010

Born in Baltimore, Maryland. Passed away peacefully with his family at his side in Laguna Woods, California.

Herman was a Navy veteran, and a writer and producer for film and television, and wrote scripts for favorite shows such as "Bewitched," "Fantasy Island," and "Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color." He is survived by his sons Brian and Kevin, and daughters Allison, Kimberly, Kathleen, and Stephanie, 16 grandchildren, and 3 great-grandchildren.

A memorial celebration will be held on December 13th at 11 a.m. at Harbor Lawn-Mt. Olive Memorial Park, 1625 Gisler Street, Costa Mesa, CA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Imagine Foundation, P.O. Box 9577, Newport Beach, California, 92658.

GROVES, Herman (Herman John Groves)
Born: 9/21/1927, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.
Died: 12/5/2010, Laguna Woods, California, U.S.A.

Herman Groves westerns - screenwriter, assistant producer:
The Restless Gun (TV) - 1959
Bonanza (TV) - 1959, 1960
Hotel de Paree (TV) - 1960
Tate (TV) - 1960
The Rifleman (TV) - 1961, 1962
Have Gun - Will Travel (TV) - 1962
The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters (TV) - 1963
Temple Houston (TV) - 1963, 1964
The Virginian (TV) - 1964
Rawhide (TV) - 1965
Daniel Boone (TV) - 1965, 1967
The Iron Horse (TV) - 1967
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1969, 1975
Ride a Northbound Horse - 1969
Flap - 1970 [assistant producer]
Return of the Big Cat (TV) - 1974

Thursday, January 6, 2011

RIP Margot Stevenson

Actress Margot Stevenson dies at 98

Thesp appeared on Broadway, radio

By Variety Staff

Margot Stevenson, an actress on Broadway and radio, died Sunday in New York. She was 98.

In 1932 she made her Broadway debut in "The Firebird." Stevenson appeared in more than 20 Broadway shows including "You Can't Take It With You," in which she starred as Alice Sycamore; "The Barretts of Wimpole Street"; and "Venus Observed," directed by Laurence Olivier. She also acted in "The Seven Year Itch" and "Sweet Peril" in London's West End. She last appeared on Broadway in a 1976 production of "The Royal Family."

In 1938, Stevenson began appearing in "The Shadow" as Margo Lane opposite a relatively new Orson Welles. The character had been inspired by and named for her by Clark Andrews, the show's original producer. Stevenson was among the last surviving original stars of "The Shadow."

She could be heard on other radio shows including "The Silver Theater," "Grand Central Station," "The Fat Man" and "Life Can Be Beautiful."

Survivors include daughter thesp Margot Avery.

STEVENSON, Margot (Margaret Helen Stevenson)
Born: 2/8/1912, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 1/2/2011, New York City, New York, U.S.A.

Margot Stevenson's western - actress:
Granny Get Your Gun - 1940 (Julie Westcott)

RIP Patricia Smith

LASELL, Patricia Smith b. l930, d. Jan. 2, 2011 in Los Angeles. She was a fine wife, mother, actress, legal assistant, and dearest friend to Joe and Peter, her sons with John Lasell. Scarcely out of the Neighborhood Playhouse, she was featured with Henry Fonda in "Point of No Return" on Broadway, followed by many TV and Movie appearances including "Bachelor Party", "Spirit of St. Louis", the Debbie Reynolds Show, the Bob Newhart show, Save The Tiger, and frequently with Quinn Martin's productions. Later she worked for several years in the legal department at Gorfaine-Schwartz Agency, the film composers agency. She enjoyed every minute of her life, even through a sixty-five year fight with Diabetes, only to be let down by her heart at the end. She gave great care and love to everyone.

SMITH, Patricia
Born: 2/20/1930, New Haven, Connecticut, U.S.A.
Died: 1/2/2011, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Patricia Smith's westerns - actress:
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1958, 1961 (Abby, Edna Walstrom)
Bonanza (TV) - 1969 (Margaret Claybourne)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

RIP Miriam Seegar

 Miriam Seegar Whelan

Actress became an interior designer

Miriam Seegar Whelan, 103, an actress from the early days of talking films who was married to director Tim Whelan, died Sunday of age-related causes at her home in Pasadena, said her daughter-in-law Harriet Whelan.

After her acting career ended, Whelan became an interior designer in Los Angeles.

She was born September 1, 1907, in Greentown, Indiana, where she and her sisters enjoyed play-acting as children. In her teens she joined a traveling group of stage performers in the Midwest and New York. She eventually made her way to London and starred opposite Ernest Truex in a West End production of "Crime".

She began appearing in British films in the late 1920s, earning top billing in "Valley of the Ghosts" (1928). She met her future husband on the set of "When Knights Were Bold" a 1929 film he directed.

After the couple returned to the United States, she starred in such Hollywood films as the 1930 romantic comedy "What a Man", the 1930 western "The Dawn Trail" and the 1932 crime drama "Out of Singapore".

She left acting to raise the two sons she had with Whelan. He died in 1957.

SEEGAR, Miriam
Born: 9/1/1907, Greentown, Indiana, U.S.A.
Died: 1/2/2011, Pasadena, California, U.S.A.

Miraim Seegar's western - actress:
The Dawn Trail - 1930 (June Denton) [as Miriam Seeger]

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

RIP Jill Haworth

Jill Haworth, Original Sally in ‘Cabaret,’ Dies at 65

Published: January 4, 2011

Jill Haworth, a British-born film ingénue in the 1960s who made her only Broadway appearance as the original Sally Bowles in “Cabaret,” died Monday at her home in Manhattan. She was 65. The police confirmed her death, attributing it to natural causes.

A petite, strikingly pretty blonde (she wore a dark wig on Broadway), Ms. Haworth was just 14 when she was signed to appear, along with Paul Newman, Eva Marie Saint and Sal Mineo, as a displaced Jew in “Exodus” (1960), Otto Preminger’s grandiose adaptation of the Leon Uris novel about the birth of the state of Israel. She made three films in France and then two others with Preminger, “The Cardinal” and “In Harm’s Way,” before auditioning for “Cabaret,” along with more than 200 other actresses, and winning the part of Sally, the lovably intemperate lass who sings for her supper at a decadent nightclub in Weimar-era Berlin.

Julie Harris had played Sally in the John Van Druten play “I Am a Camera,” on which the musical drew for its source material (along with the Christopher Isherwood book “The Berlin Stories,” on which the play was based). Liza Minnelli would make the role indelibly hers when she starred in the 1972 film, directed by Bob Fosse. For Ms. Haworth, the role would be the high point of her career. Just 21 on opening night and with scant stage experience, she had never before sung a note professionally. The reviews were not overly kind, and one in particular was a damning declaration by Walter Kerr in The New York Times. “ ‘Cabaret’ is a stunning musical with one wild wrong note,” Kerr began, later naming Ms. Haworth as the clunker and calling her “a damaging presence, worth no more to the show than her weight in mascara.” Harold Prince, who directed the musical, recalled in an interview Tuesday that Ms. Haworth was remarkably steadfast and mature after the drubbing. She played the part for nearly two years and “never laid the weight of that on anyone,” he said. “We just loved her.” “They underestimated her,” Mr. Prince said of the critics. “Sally Bowles was not supposed to be a professional singer. She wasn’t supposed to be so slick that you forgot she was an English girl somewhat off the rails in the Weimar era. When Jill came in and auditioned, she nailed it right away, walked that line. That’s what we wanted, and that’s what she delivered.”

Valerie Jill Haworth was born, according to many online sources, in Sussex, England, on Aug. 15, 1945. Her parents, who divorced when she was a girl, were well-to-do. Her father was a textiles magnate who also drove racing cars; her mother trained as a ballet dancer, as did Ms. Haworth. “Society looked down on me for becoming an actress, but I don’t miss society, ” she told the gossip columnist Earl Wilson in 1965, adding that in America she acceded to a change in the pronunciation of her name. “I can’t get anyone here to pronounce it ‘Hahworth.’ Just as long as they don’t spell it H-a-y.” Information about her family, including survivors, wasn’t immediately available.

Following “Cabaret,” she appeared in a handful of horror movies and in television series including “Mission: Impossible,” “Bonanza” and “Baretta.” But her career never regained the upward path on which it had begun. “She was ‘let’s have a good time,’ ” Joel Grey, who starred as the master of ceremonies in the original “Cabaret,” said on Tuesday. “She had a wild abandon about herself and her life. I understood why Hal chose her. She was so Sally Bowles.”

HAWORTH, Jill (Valerie Jill Haworth)
Born: 8/15/1945, Sussex, England, U.K.
Died: 1/4/2011, Manhattan, New York, U.S.A.

Jill Haworth's westerns - actress:
Rawhide (TV) - 1965 (Vicki Woodruff)
Bonanza (TV) - 1971 (Gillian Harwood)

Monday, January 3, 2011

RIP Josef Shiloach

Renowned Israeli actor Josef Shiloach died Monday January 3, 2011 in Israel at the age of 69. Shiloach, who starred in several Israeli cult classics such as "Alex Hole Ahava", "Sapiches" and "Hagiga B’Snuker" passed away following a long battle with cancer. He leaves behind a wife and three daughters. Shiloach was born in Kurdistan in 1941 and immigrated to Israel at the age of 9. He appeared in his first film in 1964 and went on to star in dozens of Israeli films and TV shows. At the end of the 1980s and into the 1990s Shiloach appeared in a number of international film productions including "Rambo 3", "The Mummy Lives" and "Not Without My Daughter. In 2009, Shiloach won the lifetime achievement award at the Jerusalem Film Festival.

SHILOACH, Joesf (aka Joseph Shiloach, Yossi Shiloah)
Born: 7/9/1941, Kuridstan
Died: 1/3/2011, Jerusalem, Israel

Josef Shiloach's westerns - actor:
Carlos (TV) - 1971 (Mario) [as Yossi Shiloah]
Kid Vengeance - 1976 (Lupe) [as Joseph Shiloach]

RIP Pete Postlewhaite

Pete Postlethwaite Dead At 64

Oscar-nominated performer appeared in 'Inception,' 'The Usual Suspects,' 'In the Name of the Father.'

By Gil Kaufman

British actor Pete Postlethwaite, best known to American audiences for his Oscar-nominated role in 1993's biographical film about Irish Republican Army bombers "In the Name of the Father," died on Sunday at the age of 64.

BBC News reports that Postlethwaite, who also appeared in the 2010 box-office smash "Inception," passed away peacefully in a hospital in Shropshire, England, after a long battle with cancer.

Postlethwaite's 40-year career encompassed both stage and screen, including a stint in the 1980s with the Royal Shakespeare Company after years of working in regional English theater. With the kind of instantly recognizable face crucial for a character actor — sunken, bony cheeks, broad forehead and a bulbous nose — Postlethwaite made his way to the screen in 1988 in the British drama "Distant Voices, Still Lives," one of many rough-edged, working-class roles he would take on over the years.

He was born in Warrington, England, on February 7, 1946, and initially trained to be a teacher, serving as a drama instructor at Loreto College in Manchester before taking a detour into acting.

His breakthrough came playing Daniel Day-Lewis' father in the political drama "In the Name of the Father," which earned him a best-supporting-actor Oscar nomination. He followed that part with other memorable roles in films such as "The Usual Suspects," "Brassed Off" and "Amistad." Postlethwaite also made forays into big-budget Hollywood fare, including "Alien 3," Baz Luhrmann's "Romeo + Juliet," "Inception," "Clash of the Titans" and "The Lost World: Jurassic Park." It was his work in that dinosaur sequel that led director Steven Spielberg to dub the veteran performer the "best actor in the world."

Postlethwaite returned to the stage in 2008 to star in Shakespeare's "King Lear" at the Everyman Theater in Liverpool, where he had gotten his start nearly 40 years earlier.

He is survived by his wife and two children.

POSTLEHWAITE, Pete (Peter William Postlehwaite)
Born: 2/16/1946, Warrington, Cheshire, England, U.K.
Died: 1/2/2011, Shropshire, England, U.K.

Pete Postlehwaite's westerns - actor:
The Last of the Mohicans - 1992 (Captain Beams)
Zorro (TV) - 1990 (Correo's accomplice)
Cowboy Up - 2001 (Reid Braxton)

RIP Anne Francis

'Forbidden Planet' Star Anne Francis Dies at 80

Anne Francis, star of 'Forbidden Planet,' 'Honey West,' dies in California at age 80

Actress Anne Francis, who was the love interest in the 1950s science-fiction classic "Forbidden Planet" and later was sexy private eye in "Honey West" on TV has died at age 80 in California.

Funeral director Bill Guntle in Santa Barbara says Francis died Sunday of natural causes at a local nursing home. Her daughter, Jane Uemura, tells the Los Angeles Times that Francis died from complications of pancreatic cancer.

Francis, a famous beauty of the time, had a childhood career in radio and TV and on Broadway before turning to movies. In later years she returned to television, appearing in dozens of series.

In "Honey West," which aired from 1965 to 1966, she played a female James Bond who kept a pet ocelot.

FRANCIS, Anne (Anne Lloyd Francis)
Born: 9/16/1930, Ossining, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 1/2/2011, Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A.

Anne Francis' Westerns - actress:
Anne Francis’ westerns - actress:

Bad Day at Black Rock - 1955 (Liz Wirth)
The Hired Gun - 1957 (Ellen Beldon)
Rawhide (TV) - 1959 (Rose Wittman)
Temple Housron (TV) - 1964 (Kate Fitzpatrick)
Death Valley Days (TV) - 1964 (Pearl Hart)
The Virginian (TV) - 1964, 1970 (Victoria Greenleigh, Myrna)
More Dead Than Alive - 1969 (Monica Alton)
Wild Women (TV) - 1970 (Jean Marshek)
The Intruders (TV) - 1970 (Leora Garnson)
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1972 (Sarah)
Pancho Villa - 1972 (Flo)
Kung Fu (TV) - 1974 (Ida Quinlan)
Banjo Hackett: Roamin’ Free (TV) - 1976 (Flora Dobbs)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

RIP Bill Erwin


Character actor got Emmy nomination

Bill Erwin, 96, a veteran character actor remembered for his role as Arthur the bellman in the 1980 fantasy film "Somewhere in Time" and his Emmy-nominated guest appearance on "Seinfeld," died Wednesday at his home in Studio City of age-related causes, his son Mike said Friday.

Erwin had a long-running career in film, television and theater with dozens of roles in episodic TV. He was nominated for an Emmy Award as outstanding guest actor in a comedy series in 1993 playing the cranky Sid Fields in a "Seinfeld" episode titled "Old Man."

He also had roles in the TV series "Growing Pains," "Gunsmoke," "Highway to Heaven," "Perry Mason," "The Golden Girls," "Twilight Zone," " Zane Grey Theater," "Who's the Boss?" and many more.

Erwin became a favorite of the devoted fans of "Somewhere in Time," the romantic time-travel drama starring Christopher Reeve and Jane Seymour, and he was featured in a documentary accompanying the film's 20th anniversary DVD.

William Lindsey Erwin was born Dec. 2, 1914, in Honey Grove, Texas, and earned a bachelor's degree in journalism at the University of Texas at Austin in 1935.

He studied acting at the Pasadena Playhouse and performed there and at the Laguna Beach Playhouse and La Jolla Playhouse beginning in 1940.

Erwin continued acting on local stages over the decades and received a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award in 1983 for his performance in "Old Friends" at the Actors Forum.

ERWIN, Bill (William Lindsey Erwin)
Born: 12/2/1914, Honey Grove, Texas, U.S.A.
Died: 12/29/2010, Studio City, California, U.S.A.

Bill Erwin's westerns - actor:
Cheyenne (TV) - 1956
Man from Del Rio - 1956 (Roy Higgens)
Sheriff of Cochise (TV) - 1957
Zane Grey Theater (TV) - 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961 (Clay Daivs, Sam Townley)
Gun Fever - 1958 (bartender)
Colt .45 (TV) - 1958
Trackdown (TV) - 1958 (Dawson)
Sugarfoot (TV) - 1958
Lawman (TV) - 1958
Have Gun - Will Travel (TV) - 1958, 1959, 1960 (citizen)
The Texan (TV) - 1958, 1959, 1960 (Lee Cosby)
The Rifleman (TV) - 1959 (Joe Flecker)
Wagon Train (TV) - 1959 (Clegg, Barnaby West)
Tales of Wells Fargo (TV) - 1959 (Justin Peevy)
Desilu Playhouse - 1959
Bat Masterson (TV) - 1959 (Teller)
Black Saddle (TV) - 1959 (Kelly)
Tombstone Territory (TV) - 1959
Johnny Ringo (TV) - 1959
Law of the Plainsman (TV) - 1959
Rawhide (TV) - 1961
Outlaws (TV) - 1961
Maverick (TV) - 1961 (hotel clerk)
Terror at Black Falls - 1962 (Hugh ‘Squint’ Edwards)
The Dakotas (TV) - 1963 (doctor)
The Virginian (TV) - 1964
Death Valley Days (TV) - 1964
The Big Valley (TV) - 1965
Laredo (TV) - 1967
The Guns of Will Sonnett (TV) - 1967
The Wild Wild West (TV) - 1967 (jury foreman)
Here Come the Brides (TV) - 1970
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1957, 1958, 1961, 1964, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1973, 1974 (Reverend Tucker, Ned Wright, townsman, captain, judge, juror, businessman, bailiff, telegraph agent, Greeves, Mr. Jonas, Snood)
Lone Star (TV) - 1983 (Ezra Holloway)