Wednesday, December 28, 2016
Tragic news tonight...
Debbie Reynolds died tonight as a result of a stroke. She was 84 and had been taken to Cedars Sinai Medical Center this afternoon complaining of difficulty breathing, just a day after her daughter Carrie Fisher died at 60 after a heart attack.
A teenage beauty queen, Reynolds had moved to MGM after some unproductive years at Warner Bros., where her only film of note was The Daughter Of Rosie O’Grady. She will forever be remembered as Kathy Selden, the fledgling actress of serious intent who wins the heart of Gene Kelly’s Don Lockwood in the 1952 Freed Unit classic Singin’ In The Rain.
She was rarely off the celebrity radar screen over more than six decades that included a headline generating divorce when her husband, singer Eddie Fisher, left her for Elizabeth Taylor; more choice roles on film (including The Tender Trap (1955), with Frank Sinatra; A Catered Affair (1956), with Bette Davis and Ernest Borgnine, and the title role in another musical, 1964’s The Unsinkable Molly Brown; and Broadway (as the star of the 1974 revival of Irene). Molly Brown brought her her sole Oscar nomination for best actress.
Her TV career had an inauspicious infancy with The Debbie Reynolds Show in 1969, a time when variety shows were changing with the culture with programs like Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In and The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour. Reynolds’ show was canceled after one season. Nevertheless, she was a guest star on many series, right up through NBC’s hit Will & Grace.
Reynolds’ personal life was marked by marriages that ended in divorce and financial wreckage, from which she invariably bounced back with entrepreneurial ingenuity and an un-defeatable optimism.
She was a Hollywood legend and had an amazing career that spanned decades. To have her pass the day after her daughter, Carrie Fisher...terrible and sad for their families and friends.
She will be fondly remembered and greatly missed.
Tuesday, December 27, 2016
Very sad news today...
One of the most iconic figures in modern film history is gone. Carrie Fisher, the actress known worldwide for portraying Princess Leia Organa in the Star Wars saga and for her second act reinvention as a novelist, diarist, screenwriter, and in-demand script doctor, has died just days after suffering a heart attack. She was 60.
The daughter of singer Eddie Fisher and actress Debbie Reynolds (whose marriage and tumultuous divorce made headlines while she was just a girl), Fisher grew up in Beverly Hills a bookish, reserved child, before embarking on an acting career while still in high school. She would make her first prominent acting appearance as a debutante and singer in the Broadway revival of Irene, which starred her mother. This was followed in 1975 with an acclaimed appearance in Warren Beatty’s hit comedy Shampoo.
But it was of course her second film role that would catapult her to permanent and worldwide fame. Co-starring alongside Harrison Ford and Mark Hamill in the George Lucas-directed Star Wars – since retitled Star Wars: A New Hope – Fisher portrayed Leia Organa, Princess, Senator and in the most recent film, General. One of the leaders of the Rebel Alliance, Leia as portrayed by Fisher is a hard-as-nails, uncompromising freedom fighter despite losing her family and homeworld. Fisher would go on to portray Leia in the Star Wars sequels The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and 2015’s The Force Awakens, as well as the much-derided 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special.
Though as an actress her non-Star Wars roles were vastly overshadowed by the intergalactic Princess, Fisher continued to pursue varied and interesting roles in front of the camera. Among them, she notably appeared in The Blues Brothers, The Man with One Red Shoe, Hannah and Her Sisters, When Harry Met Sally…, and a slew of other films, often referencing her most well-known role.
Fisher is also known for her book, Postcards From The Edge, and wrote the screenplay for the movie from her novel. She was previously married to Paul Simon.
She was a very talented writer and actress with a colorful career and personal life and will certainly be missed.
Monday, December 26, 2016
Sad news over the weekend....
Pop singer George Michael, an acclaimed singer and songwriter who became one of the most successful and influential artists of his time with his band, Wham! and later as a solo artist, has died. He was 53.
Born Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou in 1963 North London to a Greek Cypriot father and an English mother, Michael first achieved fame alongside his friend Andrew Ridgeley in 1981 as the pop duo Wham!. The band’s first album, “Fantastic” was a major hit in Britain, but it was “Make it Big”, the duo’s 1984 follow up that catapulted them to worldwide fame. The album would spawn five hit singles and eventually sell more than six million copies in the United States alone, turning Michael, lead singer and lead songwriter, into a global icon.
Wham! would sell over 25 million records during their tenure, which ended with the group’s 1986 split amidst Michael’s increasing prominence in the band’s image, and his desire to break way from the clean cut, teen pop idol image associated with the duo. Michael would achieve that desire and even greater success as a solo artist with his 1987 solo debut, “Faith”.
He had an amazing career in the 80's and 90's and certainly left his mark in the music world for years to come.
He will be missed.
Thursday, December 22, 2016
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Passengers opens TODAY and looks like it might be a lot of fun (which is why I'm seeing it tonight).
Speaking of fun, watch this hilarious game of insults that Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt played on a talkshow in the UK...
OMG....the winner really deserved it.
They are both very funny people.
Here's the movie trailer, if you haven't already seen it...
Tuesday, December 20, 2016
The first teaser trailer for Blade Runner 2049 was just released...
The effects and setting look similar to the original and it's great that Harrison Ford is back and that Ryan Gosling is also one of the leads.
So, that's a bonus.
However, I still don't like the "2049" attached to the end of the title.
It reminds me of the cheesy Battlestar Galactica spin-off series Galactica 1980.
Let's hope that this sequel is WAY better than that was....
Monday, December 19, 2016
Sad news over the weekend...
Zsa Zsa Gabor, Hungarian-American beauty queen and actress whose varied acting career was often overshadowed by her colorful personal life – a personal life that included a string of ex-husbands like hotel magnate Conrad Hilton and actor George Sanders – has died after suffering a heart attack in her home. She was 99.
Gabor grew up the child of a wealthy Jewish family in the newly-established state of Hungary alongside her siblings, elder sister Magda Gabor, and equally famous younger sister Eva Gabor. Educated at a Swiss boarding school, Zsa Zsa was discovered in 1934 by Austrian opera tenor Richard Tauber, beginning her acting career on the stage.
An early shot at fame came in 1936 when she was crowned Miss Hungary and from there kicked off what would become a varied career that included a 1944 novel, and dozens of film and television roles. Among her film roles, she appeared in Orson Welles’ Touch of Evil, The Road to Hong Kong, A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors, and even A Very Brady Sequel. In one of her few leading roles, Gabor memorably played Jane Avril in 1952’s Moulin Rouge alongside José Ferrer.
Meanwhile, on television her numerous guest roles include appearances on The Milton Berle Show, Batman, Gilligan’s Island, Bonanza, The Love Boat, The Facts of Life, the Pee-wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special, It’s Garry Shandling’s Show, and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.
But of course, it was her personal life, not her entertainment career, for which Zsa Zsa became world famous. Married eight times (with one annulment), her husbands included the likes of left wing Turkish activist and politician Burhan Asaf Belge (married from 1937–1941), Hotel tycoon Conrad “Connie” Hilton (1942 – 1947), and All About Eve actor George Sanders (1949 – 1954). Gabor cultivated a mystique about her marriages and numerous love affairs and was known in particular for her sharp wit applied to her personal life. “I am a marvelous housekeeper: Every time I leave a man I keep his house,” she once said about her divorces.
She had quite a long career and certainly lived a colorful, almost early-reality-TV-style, life.
Friday, December 16, 2016
Thursday, December 15, 2016
More sad news today...
Bernard Fox, known for playing Dr. Bombay on Bewitched and for roles in The Mummy and Titanic, has died.
He was 89.
The Welsh actor had 30 film credits from 1956-2004, including two films around the sinking of RMS Titanic. Fox was in James Cameron’s 1997 smash Titanic as Col. Archibald Gracie IV and 1958’s A Night to Remember in an uncredited role as Frederick Fleet.
His best known roles also included the womanizing warlock Dr. Bombay on Bewitched from 1966-72 and as Captain Winston Havlock in the 1999 pic The Mummy. He also recurred as the bumbling Col. Crittendon on Hogan’s Heroes through the late ‘60s and lent his voice to the 1977 Disney movie The Rescuers and its 1990 sequel, The Rescuers Down Under.
Bewitched is one of my favorite all-time TV shows and he was always hilarious on it.
He will be missed.
Wednesday, December 14, 2016
Very sad news today...
Actor, songwriter, producer and TV show host Alan Thicke, best known as one of the defining sitcom dads as family patriarch Jason Seaver on ABC’s hit 80s sitcom Growing Pains, has died.
He was 69.
Though most strongly associated with his best-known role, Thicke was also an accomplished songwriter who composed iconic theme songs for several classic shows, including Diff’rent Strokes, The Facts of Life, and the original theme to Wheel of Fortune.
Thicke continued to work regularly after the end of Growing Pains. Among his roles on television were guest spots on Married… with Children, 7th Heaven, Joey, a seven-episode stint on The Bold and the Beautiful, and a five-episode stint as himself on How I Met Your Mother among many others. He also had numerous film roles, with appearances in Raising Helen, and the Nick Cassavetes-directed Alpha Dog among others.
He had amazing career for sure and will certainly be missed.
Monday, December 12, 2016
The first trailer for The Fate of the Furious (Fast and Furious 8) was just released....
Well...lots of fast cars, guns, and things blowing up. And Charlize Theron.
All the action boxes seem to be checked.
I also believe that Helen Mirren is in this one too.
The movie races into theaters on April 14th.
Friday, December 9, 2016
Thursday, December 8, 2016
Tuesday, December 6, 2016
The teaser trailer for Transformers: The Last Knight was released today...
Honestly, these movies all end up being the same. Humans talk. Robots fight. Things blow up.
Or IS it?
It never is.
The movie explodes into theaters on June 23rd.
Monday, December 5, 2016
Friday, December 2, 2016
Looks like the Aquaman movie now has a release date...
The Warner Bros superhero pic starring Jason Momoa and directed by James Wan will hit theaters October 5, 2018 in both 3D and IMAX.
Aquaman made his cinematic debut earlier this year via a short cameo in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. The character will next be seen in a major role in the Zack Snyder-directed follow up Justice League, which sees the major heroes of the DC Universe united to face off against DC Villain Steppenwolf.
The Aquaman stand-alone film stars Jason Momoa as Aquaman – AKA Arthur Curry, king of Atlantis – alongside Amber Heard as Mera, Queen of Atlantis in the comics and likely to fill the same role here.
I guess a lot of this film's success is going to ride on how well his character is received when he shows up in the Justice League movie next year.
Fingers and fins crossed.
Thursday, December 1, 2016
The first teaser trailer for the upcoming movie, The Mummy, was released today...
Well...not much to see in this short trailer, other than Tom Cruise has "seen her" and she appears to have a vision issue.
Guess we'll get a better idea what actually goes on when the full trailer is released on Sunday (if not earlier).
UPDATE: Here is the full trailer:
The movie opens on June 7th.