Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Some very sad news over the holidays...
You may not know his name, but anyone who watches movies and television knows the squat, tough-faced character actor Charles Durning, who died on Christmas Eve, according to his family.
The 89-year-old decorated World War II veteran had an award-winning career that spanned 20th Century entertainment, from the burlesque stage and theater to television and film, playing roles as diverse as society itself. Durning was the gruff father smitten by Dustin Hoffman's female impersonation of "Tootsie," the Southern politician dancing on stage with George Clooney's Soggy Bottom Boys in "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" and the corrupt cop caught up in the "big con" by Paul Newman and Robert Redford in "The Sting."
He won Tony and Golden Globe awards and was nominated for Academy Awards two times as a supporting actor. He also received nine Emmy nominations and was honored in 2007 with a lifetime achievement award from the Screen Actors Guild.
He was always good in everything he did, but I really enjoyed him in Tootsie!
Also, another loss...
Jack Klugman, best known as messy sports writer Oscar Madison in TV's "The Odd Couple," died Monday at his California home, his son Adam said. He was 90.
Klugman, who won two Emmys for his role in the early 1970s sitcom, also starred in "Quincy, M.E." as medical examiner Dr. R. Quincy from 1976 to 1983.
And one more...
Some of the coolest spaceships ever filmed came from Gerry Anderson, who died today after a long battle with Alzheimer's Disease. Anderson did more for space opera on television than almost any other single creator, launching space show after space show from the 1960s to the 1990s.
But Anderson is probably best known in the United States for creating Space: 1999, a live-action show about the crew of a Moonbase who must survive after the Moon is thrown out of Earth's orbit.
Space 1999 is still one of my all-time-favorite Sci-Fi shows.
They will all be missed.