Friday, July 31, 2009

RIP Richard Jury

SATRIANO, RICHARD Aka RICHARD JURY October 25, 1926 July 24, 2009 Richard, age 82, was a locally renowned actor, and a native Denverite. He attended Denver Public Schools and was a theatre & philosophy major at the University of Denver. A WWII veteran, he served in the US Coast Guard from 1943 1946. In New York, Richard appeared on Broadway in Inherit the Wind and gained critical acclaim for his roles in theatre, film, and television in Hollywood before returning to Denver where he continued his acting career in radio, television, movies and theatre. He is survived by his wife Liz Jury; his children, Claudia, Christopher, Cindy, Michael, and Elizabeth Satriano, and Pam Stephens; his five grandchildren; and his three great-grandchildren. Memorial service will be held Monday, August 3.


JURY, Rick real name Richard Satriano
Born: 10/25/1926, Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
Died: 7/24/2009, Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.

Rick Jury’s westerns – actor:
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1963 (Humphreys)
The Outcasts (TV) – 1969 (Price), (Travelling Salesman)
The Brothers O’Toole – 1978
Donner Pass: The Road to Survival (TV) – 1978
Conagher (TV) – 1991 (Tom Webb)

RIP Renato Izzo

Noted voice actor and screenwriter Renato Izzo died in Rome, Italy on July 30th. He was the head of a family of actors and voice actors such as Simona, Rossella, Fiamma, and Giuppu Izzo. He had just celebrated 60 years in show business when he turned 80 years-old on June 15th. He was married to his lovely wife Liliana for 56 years with whom he founded Pumas which is a historical society dedicated to cinema voice dubbing.

Izzo had dubbed more than 1000 film and along with Alberto Lionello, Ferruccio Amendola, Pino Locchi and Maria Laura Baccarini was one of the biggest names of that generation of Italian voice actors. He was the Italian voice of such noted actors as Gregory Peck, Paul Newman, and Alain Delon


IZZO, Renato
Born: 6/15/1929, Italy
Died: 7/30/2009, Rome, Lazio, Italy

Renato Izzo’s westerns – screenwriter, voice actor:
Kill and Pray – 1967 [screenwriter]
A Man Called Amen – 1968 [screenwriter]
If You Meet Sartana, Pray for Your Death – 1968 [screenwriter]
Sabata – 1969 [screenwriter]
Adios, Sabata – 1970 [screenwriter]
Chato’s Land – 1971 [Italian voice of Richard Jordan]
Return of Sabata – 1971 [screenwriter]
Too Much Gold for One Gringo – 1972 [screenwriter]
Dallas – 1975 [screenwriter]

Thursday, July 30, 2009

RIP Roberto Ramírez Garza

Roberto Ramírez Garza dies "Beto el Boticario"

Posted on July 29, 2009, 7:40 am.

The Mexican actor and comedian Roberto Ramírez Garza, better known as Beto "El Boticario ", died today in a Lima hospital, where he remained for more than 20 days in intensive care.

The actor's family remained pending during the hospital stay, however, each day the prognosis was less encouraging.

Remembered for his participation in the program "carabina Ambrose of" histrionic Santelena admitted to hospital for a problem in the lungs, joined other ailments.
The actor was being treated after being subjected to a second operation, after a colonoscopy, which allows scanning direct visualization of the large intestine, which caused the infection


GARZA, Roberto Ramírez (aka Beto el Boticario)
Born: 8/19/1928, Monterey, Nuevo de Leon, Mexico
Died: 7/28/2009, Mexico City, Federal District, Mexico

Roberto Ramírez Garza’s westerns – actor:
El hombre del latigo negro – 1961
Venganza fatal – 1960
Aventuras del latigo negro – 1961
Con la misma moneda – 1961
La muerte pasa lista – 1962
Cruces sobre el yermo – 1967
Furias bajo el cielo - 1971

RIP Tony Brandt

The IMDb and Legends of the Cinema are both reporting that assistant director/actor Tony Brand died on July 25th. Often credited with co-director status on Monte Hellman’s 1978 “China 9, Liberty 37” this was only done for co-production reasons and his name was listed for tax purposes only and was never involved as director. Mr. Brandt did appear as an actor and assistant director on several other European westerns as listed below.


BRANDT, Antonio
Born: 6/13/1930, Rome, Lazio, Italy
Died: 7/25/2009, Padova, Veneto, Italy,

Tony Brandt’s westerns – actor, assistant director.
The Arizona Kid – 1971 [actor]
Duck You Sucker (aka A Fistful of Dynamite) – 1971 [assistant director]
Massacre at Fort Holman – 1972 [assistant director]
China 9, Liberty 37 – 1978 (Jefferson) [actor]

RIP Virginia Carroll

Virginia Carroll, film actress, dies at 95
July 30, 2009

Virginia Carroll, 95, a movie character actress and B-western leading
lady who appeared opposite cowboy stars such as Don "Red" Barry and
Tex Ritter, died of natural causes July 23 in a Santa Barbara
retirement community, said her daughter, Carroll Byrd Evangeline.

A Los Angeles department store model when she launched her film career
with a bit part as a fashion model in the 1935 movie "Roberta,"
Carroll appeared in her first western in 1936 opposite Jack La Rue in
"A Tenderfoot Goes West."

Mixing leads with supporting and character roles, Carroll appeared in
westerns with Gene Autry, Johnny Mack Brown, Bill Elliott, Roy Rogers,
Whip Wilson and other stars. She later appeared on TV shows such as
"The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok," "The Roy Rogers Show," "Dragnet"
and "Perry Mason."

Carroll was born in Los Angeles on Dec. 2, 1913. She was married to
actor Ralph Byrd, who starred as Dick Tracy in movie serials and on
early television, from 1936 until his death in 1952. She was married
to her second husband, Lloyd McLean, a projectionist at 20th Century
Fox, from 1957 until his death in 1969.


CARROLL, Virginia Elizabeth
Born: 12/2/1913, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 7/23/2009, Santa Barbara, California, U.S.A.

Virginia Carroll’s westerns – actress:
A Tenderfoot Goes West – 1936 (Ann Keith)
Oklahoma Terror – 1939 (Helen Martin)
The Phantom Cowboy – 1941 (Elanita Toreno)
The Masked Rider – 1941 (Margarita Valdez)
Raiders of the West – 1942 (Lola Andre)
Prairie Gunsmoke – 1942 (Lucy Wade)
Heldorado – 1946 (Ann)
The Last Round-up – 1947 (saleslady)
Overland Trails – 1948 (Mary Cramer)
Frontier Agent – 1948 (Paula)
Triggerman – 1948 (Lois Benton)
Crashing Thru – 1949 (Mrs. Gray)
Bad Men of Tombstone – 1949 (Matilda Stover)
Riders of the Whistling Pines – 1949 (towswoman)
The Blazing Sun – 1950 (townswoman)
Trail of Robin Hood – 1950 (Aldrige’s secretary)
Pals of the Golden West – 1951 (Well’s secretary)
The Roy Rogers Show (TV) – 1952, 1954, 1955, 1956 (various roles)
Red River Shore – 1953 (townswoman)
The Adventures of Kit Carson (TV) – 1954 (May Jordan)
The Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok (TV) – 1955 (Mrs. Neary)
Stranger at My Door – 1956 (Sarah Tatum)
Spoilers of the Forest – 1957 (Sarah)

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

RIP Harvey Frand

'Battlestar Galactica' producer dies

Harvey Frand, 68, won an Emmy for the sci-fi skein

By PAT SAPERSTEIN

Harvey Frand, Emmy-winning producer of "Battlestar Galactica," died in
Los Angeles after a brief hospitalization for respiratory problems. He
was 68.

Frand began his TV producing career in 1985 with "The Devlin
Connection," Rock Hudson's final series. He went on to produce the
1985-87 version of "The Twilight Zone" as well as "Beauty and the
Beast," "The Young Riders," "Lazarus Man" with Robert Urich,
"Pretender" and "Strange World." For his work on "Battlestar
Galactica," he won an AFI Award, the 2005 Peabody Award and a 2008
Emmy and is currently nominated for a second Emmy Award.

Mary McDonnell, star of the series, said in a statement, "Harvey had a
remarkable gift as a producer. He always made the person who was
voicing needs and concerns know that he was truly listening despite
the fact that you knew he was juggling hundreds of others
simultaneously."

Writer/producer Bradley Thompson said, "He would constantly challenge
us find creative ways to make the piece work within the constraints of
physical and financial reality. And if he felt we needed that
something extra... say a nuclear explosion or two... to make the story
play, he'd go to the mat to make it happen."

Born in Philadelphia, he studied political science at the U. of
Pittsburgh. After working with Students for Kennedy in college, he
started out at NBC news. As an executive for Warner Brothers he
oversaw production on the 1973 David Janssen series, "Harry O."

In addition to his work in series television, he produced more than 20
pilots and movies of the week. He also produced the 1974-75 Broadway
revival of Tennessee Williams' "Sweet Bird of Youth" starring
Christopher Walken and Irene Worth.

Frand is survived by his domestic partner of 32 years, Bill Bowersock.

Donations may be made to the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles' Alive
Music Project.


FRAND, Harvey
Born: 10/3/1940, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.A.
Died: 7/23/2009, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Harvey Frand's westerns - producer:
The Young Riders (TV) - 1989
Into the Badlands (TV) - 1991
The Lazarous Man (TV) - 1996

Sunday, July 26, 2009

RIP Donald Buka

Donald Buka, a veteran stage actor who toured with the Lunts
and acted opposite the likes of Helen Hayes and Bette Davis,
died on July 21 in Reading, MA. He was 88.

Born Aug. 17, 1920 in Cleveland, OH, his first Broadway
stage credit was in 1940 and it was a doozy - The Theatre
Guild's revival of The Taming of the Shrew, starring Alfred
Lunt and Lynn Fontanne in their sole attempt at Shakespeare.
By the end of the year he was in the ensemble of a Twelfth
Night in which Helen Hayes, as Viola, was directed by
Margaret Webster. In 1944, he was cast in no less than three
Broadway productions, beginning with Bright Boy, one of the
first shows produced by David Merrick, and followed by the
short-lived Helen Goes to Troy and Sophie.

After one more flop, 1945's Live It Again, the darkly
handsome actor began concentrating on television and film.
His first film role was perhaps his best known, playing the
son of Bette Davis in the 1943 film adaptation of Lillian
Hellman's Watch on the Rhine.

A few notable film noirs followed: "Vendatta" (produced by
Howard Hughes, who had Mr. Buka under contract for a time),
"The Street With No Name" (as Richard Widmark's evil
under-boss) and "Between Dawn and Midnight" (in which he
played a cop-killing gangster). He played a rare lead role
in 1953's "Stolen Identity," portraying a refugee taxi
driver working illegally in Vienna who switches identities
with a passenger who is murdered soon after leaving his cab.
He also took roles in many of the notable television
programs of the next two decades, including "Kraft
Television Theatre," "The Philco Television Playhouse,"
"Dragnet," "M Squad," "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," "77
Sunset Strip," "Perry Mason," "Ironside" and "The Barbara
Stanwyck Show."

Actress Yvette Vickers described a scene where Mr. Buka's
character manhandled her in an episode of "The Rebel": "He
was a fine actor, and we got into it. We were both on a
high-energy plane, like it was really happening. Yeah, he
was very rough. But we went out afterwards. He was
adorable."

He returned to Broadway one in the 1960s, for Those That
Play the Clowns; one in the 70s, A Texas Trilogy; and three
times in the 1980s, for revivals of Major Barbara, The Corn
Is Green and Design for Living. Off-Broadway theatre credits
included The Adding Machine with the Phoenix Theatre, and a
Hamlet starring Siobhan McKenna. Mr. Buka also taught acting
classes on the Upper West Side for years.
Mr Buka was married three times. The first two unions ended
in divorce. His third marriage, to artist Suzanne Sinaiko,
lasted from 1992 until her 1998, her death. He is survived
by son Dr. Robert (Bobby) L. Buka, a dermatologist in New
York City.

A memorial service is planned for the fall in Manhattan.

BUKA, Donald
Born: 8/17/1920, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.A.
Died: 7/21/2009, Reading, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Donald Buka’s westerns – actor:
New Mexico – 1951 (Pat Van Vechton)
Zane Grey Theater (TV) – 1957 (Laredo)
Boots and Saddles (TV) – 1958 (Hubbard)
Colt .45 (TV) – 1959 (Donald Blesco)
Lawman (TV) – 1959 (Harry Jensen, Cole Hawkins)
Law of the Plainsman (TV) – 1959 (Roy Cameron)
The Rebel (TV) – 1961 (Jess Galt)
Whispering Smith (TV) – 1961 (Fred Gavin)
The High Chaparral (TV) – 1969 (Major Ramsey)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

RIP Les Lye

Actor Les (Leslie) Earnest Lye, best known for the 1979 hit children's program You Can't Do That on Television, died Tuesday in Ottawa. He was 84.

Lye's career as an actor and broadcaster on television and radio has spanned half a century.

The show You Can't Do That on Television, which featured teenage actors performing comedic skits, was a Canadian success. It went international a year later and earned a large following. The program went on for 10 seasons and was later syndicated on Nickelodeon.

Lye was born in Toronto, Ont., on Nov. 18, 1924.

He served briefly in the armed forces before enrolling at the University of Toronto. Lye earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and went on to study at Lorne Greene's Academy of Radio Arts.

In 1948, Lye moved to Ottawa to join CFRA, a talk radio station founded by Frank Ryan. It was there that he became a popular radio announcer and emcee.

After briefly returning to Toronto to work at radio station CKEY, Lye went back to CFRA with a new on-air personality he created named Abercrombie and became one of the station's most popular voices.

In 1958, Lye decided to venture into television. His first job was co-hosting a talk show program called Contact.

In 1961, Lye began creating comic characters for Bill Luxton's TV morning show in Ottawa. The two later teamed up and created the hit TV show Uncle Willy and Floyd. The half-hour program featured slapstick humour, puppets and gags and was eventually syndicated across Canada. The show featured many guest stars, including Margaret Trudeau, Alanis Morissette and Rich Little. It ran for 22 years.

In 2003, Lye and Luxton were honoured with a lifetime achievement award from the Alliance of Canadian Cinema for their work on Uncle Willy and Floyd.

Lye continued to work for several TV networks, including the CBC, CTV and Global.

Lye is survived by his wife, Johnni, and three children.


LYE, Les full name Leslie Earnest Lye
Born: 11/18/1924, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Died: 7/21/2009, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

The Legend of Hiawatha (TV) - 1983 [voice]

RIP Bruce Watson

According to someone who claims to be a step-child, actor Bruce Watson died on July
11th, 2009 following a long illness. Watson appeared on such TV shows as "Star Trek," "Gunsmoke," "Bonanza," "Mission: Impossible," and "Charlie's Angels." He also starred in the 1975 film”The Swinging Barmaids” and made appearances in films like “This Property Is Condemned” (1966) and “Johnny Got His Gun” (1971).


WATSON, Bruce
Born: 7/20/1940
Died: 6/11/2009, New Mexico, U.S.A.

Bruce Watson’s westerns – actor:
Pistol ‘n’ Petticoats (TV) – 1966 (Billy Blanton)
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1968 (Howard Miller)
Johnny Got His Gun – 1971 (technician)
Bonanza (TV) – 1969 (Clay)

Monday, July 20, 2009

RIP Terry Jenkins

I discovered while searching through the IMDb today that actor Terry Jenkins is listed as passing away on April 5, 2009 in Los Angeles, California of lung cancer. According to the IMDb Jenkins was born on February 6, 1936 in Bedford, England. Although I don’t trust the IMDb 100% none of this information has been present before. I cannot find anything on line to confirm this including an archived obit in the L.A. Times. I present this information for your consideration.

JENKINS, Terry
Born: 2/6/1936, Bedford, Bedfordshire, England, U.K.
Died: 4/5/2009, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Terry Jenkins westerns – actor:
Bandidos 1967 (Ricky Shot)
Paint Your Wagon – 1969 (Joe Mooney)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

RIP David Richards

David Merrill Richards, actor, bon vivant and treasured friend died June 11, 2009 in Burbank, California of cardiac arrest while undergoing treatment for leukemia. He was looking forward to celebrating his 63rd birthday the next day.

David was born on June 12, 1946 in Denver and graduated from Arvada High School in Arvada, Colorado in 1964. His zest for life and travel took him around the world as a professional guide and enthusiastic tourist. He had no favorite place, they were all "fabulous"!

David was a bright star in the Colorado theatre world. He performed at the Country Dinner Playhouse from 1979-95 and at many other area theaters.

In the mid 90s, David's career took him to Los Angeles, where he played fashion agent Sid Garber on "The Young and Restless" for three years. He also played the hillbilly narrator on the E! Network's "The Simple Life." David appeared in four Perry Mason movies with Raymond Burr and in several episodes of the Father Dowling Mysteries with Tom Bosley. His episodic television work included appearances on "Seinfeld", "The Young Riders", "Enterprise", "The Parkers", "Secret Santa", "ER", "TheCrossing" and "Party of Five".

While working and living in Los Angeles, David continued to make frequent trips back to Colorado to perform in many plays for the Little Theatre of the Rockies in Greeley as a professional guest artist alongside University of Northern Colorado theatre students. He last strode onto a Colorado stage in 2005 in "The Man Who Came to Dinner".

David was always singled out, especially in stage reviews, for his "deadly accurate comedic timing," "irresistible charm", and "ability to steal the show with ease." He brought those same qualities to his life off the stage. When David's friends were looking for someone to entertain guests on his 60th birthday, they recruited the master himself and he dazzled.

For all his sparkling performances on stage and screen, David's greatest role was as himself. He filled a room like he filled hearts - with his joyous laugh, generous spirit and unbridled enthusiasm. He was so brilliant at the fine art of telling a joke that no one could top him and pity those who tried. He loved movies, books, magazines, architecture, cars, boats, food, travel and, above all, people. He dreamed of traveling the Thames on a riverboat; his ashes will now make the trip.

He is survived by his adored ex-wife, Gillie Richards of Hove, England, stepchildren, Pascale, Laurent and Yann and countless friends.
David now has moved on to a new audience for his superlative joke-telling -- that's not thunder, it's laughter you hear from above.

A celebration of David's life will be held on July 26th.


RICHARDS, David Merrill
Born: 6/2/1946, Denver, Colorado, U.S.A.
Died: 6/11/2009, Burbank, California, U.S.A.

David Richards westerns - actor:
The Legend of Jesse James (TV) - 1966 (Jim Younger)
The Big Valley (TV) - 1966 (Skinny)
The Young Riders (TV) - 1991

Friday, July 17, 2009

RIP Walter Cronkite

Legendary Newsman Walter Cronkite dies at 92
Jul 17, 2009, 08:33 PM | by Entertainment Weekly

CBS newsman Walter Cronkite, legendarily known as "The Most Trusted Man in America," passed away today at the age of 92.

With the face of a small-town druggist, an easily-parodied delivery that was both herky-jerky and orotund (“As-tronaut Juhn Glenn...”), and a mien of utter seriousness, Walter Cronkite was the acknowledged king of the golden era of network news. Serving as the managing editor of the CBS Evening News between 1962 and 1981, Cronkite projected a professional authority and personal integrity that invested him with a credibility no contemporary journalist, operating in a more skeptical era, possesses. When Cronkite ended a broadcast with his signature “And that’s the way it is,” neither he nor his audience doubted that it was true.

Born in 1916 in St. Joseph, Missouri, Cronkite entered journalism as an undergraduate. But it was during World War II, as a reporter for UPI, that Cronkite first distinguished himself. He sent classic dispatches from battlefields in North Africa, Normandy, and from the belly of a B-17 bomber over Germany, and parachuted with airborne troops into Holland. He joined CBS News in 1950 and soon distinguished himself with his coverage of the Korean War. “He had that special quality that television demands,” David Halberstam wrote in The Powers That Be, “that audiences sense, and that is somehow intangible -- he had weight, he projected a kind of authority.”

Continued after the jump

Elevated to evening news anchor in 1962, Cronkite arrived as the tumultuous decade was getting in gear. Through space shots and conventions, riots and assassinations, Cronkite was a sturdy presence, logging so much time at the desk that colleagues nicknamed him “Old Ironpants.” One of Cronkite’s great personal passions was sailing, and he steered the broadcasts through the turbulence with the professional steadiness of a captain piloting his ship through heavy weather. Ironically, the occasions when he stepped out of that character became his signature moments. He was unabashedly enthusiastic about America’s space program (As Apollo 11 blasted off for the movie, Cronkite cried “Go, baby, go!”). Seeing him struggle to control his own emotions while relaying the official report of President Kennedy’s death became one of the indelible images of the event (Cronkite, however, didn’t completely repress his feelings that day. After holding down the desk for four and a half wrenching hours, Cronkite took a break to call his wife; he answered a ringing telephone, only to hear a viewer saying “You people at CBS should do something about Walter Cronkite. It’s a disgrace that a man who has been trying to get John Kennedy out of office should be on the air at a time like this.” He replied, “Madam, this is Walter Cronkite, and you are a goddammed idiot!”)

More significant than these events was Cronkite’s decision to report early in 1968 that the Vietnam war was going poorly and that American troops should withdraw. “If I’ve lost Walter Cronkite, I’ve lost the country,” President Johnson is said to have concluded, and not long after announced that he would not seek re-election.
Cronkite’s retirement in 1981 marked the end of the pioneering days of network news. In the new era, television news enjoyed unprecedented influence and glamor, but suffered as journalistic imperatives wrestled with corporate demands and show biz values. Cronkite wasn’t happy. “A career can be called a success if one can look back and say ‘I made a difference,’” he wrote in his 1996 memoir A Reporter's Life. “I don’t feel I can do that. All of us in those early days of television felt, I’m sure, that we were establishing a set of standards that would be observed, or at least have influence on, generations of news professionals to come. How easily these were dismissed.” —Jamie Malanowski

CRONKITE, Jr., Walter Leland
Born: 11/14/1916, St. Joseph, Missouri, U.S.A.
Died: 7/17/2009, New York City, New York, U.S.A.

Walter Cronkite’s westerns – actor:
You Are There: The Defense of the Alamo – 1953
You Are There: The Burning of the Alamo - 1953
You Are There: Sutter Discovers Gold - 1954
You Are There: The Trial of Belle Starr - 1954
You Are There: The Gunfight at the O.K. Corral - 1955
You Are There: The End of the Dalton Gang - 1957

RIP Romana Francesca Coluzzi


Italian actress Romana Francesca Coluzzi passed away on July 16th in her home in Rome of lung cancer, she was 66. Although a fine dramatic actress, Coluzzi, as she was called by everyone including her daughters, will have her named eternally linked to the image she left in her comedy sex films of the ‘70s and ‘80s. In complete contrast to this image she created the Rome Teatrale Labobatory in 1985, which soon became nell'Associazione Culturale Minestrone d’Arte the Association of Art Cultural Minestrone which she continued to head until her death.


COLUZZI, Romana Francesca
Born: 5/20/1943, Tirana, Albania
Died: 7/16/2009, Rome, Lazio, Italy

Romana Francesca Coluzzi's westerns - actress:
Sting of the West – 1972 (Betty)
Karate, Fists and Beans – 1973 (‘Baby’ Morgan)

RIP Hugh Millais

Hollywood actor and yachtsman dies.

A Hollywood actor who enjoyed ocean racing, interior designing and who worked in the oil business has died aged 79.

Hugh Millais, appeared in films such as McCabe and Mrs Miller, the Samson Riddle and The Dogs of War. He once sailed a boat to Venice, sold her and, after being robbed, walked home to England. In 1954 he won the Cat Key to Havana race in his yacht Benbow. During a revolution in Cuba he was shot through the arm and given First Aid by Ernest Hemingway.


MILLAIS, Hugh Geoffrey
Born: 12/23/1929, Blackwater Surrey, England U.K.
Died: 7/4/2009, Kirtlington, Oxfordshire, England, U.K.

Hugh Millais's western - actor:
McCabe & Mrs. Miller - 1971 (Butler)

RIP Beverly Roberts

Born Beverly Louise Roberts in Brooklyn, New York on May 19, 1914, she was first spotted by a Warner Bros. talent scout while singing in a nightclub in 1935. Having performed as a stage actress prior to that, she was signed to a contract with Warner Bros, starring in her first film in 1936, titled “The Singing Kid”, in which she appeared opposite Al Jolson. That same year she starred opposite future Hollywood screen legend Humphrey Bogart in “Two Against the World”. The following year, in 1937, she would star in her biggest film, “God's Country and the Woman”, which would be Warner Bros first Technicolor film and in which she starred opposite George Brent.
From 1937 to 1939 she starred in sixteen films. Despite her having a successful film acting career on track, by 1940 she had returned to singing and stage acting. In the late 1940s and early 1950s she had several radio and television appearances. In 1954 she was appointed administrator of the "Theater Authority", whose members comprised the five entertainment unions. The organization exercised jurisdiction over performers appearing at charity functions and telethons. After leaving Warner Bros. in 1940, she toured the country as a singer with the Dorsey Brothers band.
Roberts retired in 1977. In 2000 she was featured in the documentary “I Used to Be in Pictures”, which revisited Hollywood's early years and featured interviews with former actresses and actors of the day. In 2002 Roberts was honored by the "Del Mar Theater" in Santa Cruz, California, and her 1936 film “China Clipper” was shown at its grand opening. That same year she was honored at the "Cinecon Film Festival" in Hollywood. In her later years, she worked in watercolor painting.

Her second-cousin Christina Baker says Roberts died Monday at her home
in Laguna Niguel, California of natural causes. She never married and had no children.


ROBERTS, Beverly Louise
Born: 5/19/1914, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A.
Died: 7/12/2009, Laguna Niguel, California, U.S.A.

Beverly Roberts western - actress:
Call of the Yukon - 1938 (Jean Williams)

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Liza Willert actress dies at 70 victom of cancer.

10/07/2009 - 06:34 PM

Mexico .- Mexican actress Liza Willert, who ventured into areas like television, dubbing, film and theater for more than four decades, died today at the age of 70 cancer victims.

Sources at the National Association of Actors (ANDA) confirmed the death of Willert and her remains will be transferred to a funeral home in the Mexican capital.

She participated in melodramas such as "La madrasta", "Ruby", "Mariana de la noche", "Tu historia de amor," "Class 406" and "Abrázame muy fuerte," among others.

Her husband, engineer Bertiz Gonzalo Gonzales, who due to his lost, failed to deliver confirmation that the actress died of cancer. Her daughther Gaby Willert also an actress, declined comment.

"Vecinos", "Hospital el paisa", "Mujer casos de la vida real", "Por tu amor", "Rosalinda", "La mentira", "Camila", "Cañaveral de pasiones", is another work those who collaborated.


WILLERT, Liza
Born: 12/31/1939, Mexico
Died: 7/10/2009, Mexico City, Federal District, Mexico

Liza Willert's westerns - actress, voice actress:
Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid - 1969 [Spanish voice of Cloris Leachman]
El juez de la soga - 1973 [actress]
Uno para la horca - 1974 [actress]
Volver, volver, volver - 1977 (Jorge's lover)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

RIP Dal McKennon

Dallas McKennon, the 'voice of Gumby' dies at 89

02:44 PM PDT on Tuesday, July 14, 2009


RAYMOND, Wash. - Northwest personality Dallas McKennon, who was the official voice of "Gumby," died Tuesday in Raymond. He was 89.

McKennon used his prolific voice talents for Walt Disney cartoon film features, Walter Lanz cartoons, "Archie (and friends)", and more.

In the Northwest, many might have known him as "Joe Meek" in the Champoeg Historic Pageants, or saw his historic musical program on The Queen of the West Riverboat, or at the Oregon Trail Story at the End of The Trail Interpretive Center.


McKENNON, Dallas R. "Dal"
Born: 7/19/1919, La Grande, Oregon, U.S.A.
Died: 7/14/2009, Raymond, Washington, U.S.A.

Dal McKennon's westerns - actor, voice actor:
Bend of the River - 1952 (miner)
Square Shootin' Square - 1955 (Dapper Dan Dooley) [voice]
Good Day for a Hanging - 1959 (carpenter)
Lawman (TV) - 1959 (Randy)
U.S. Marshal (TV) - 1960 (farmer)
Wagon Train (TV) - 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964
The Tall Man (TV) - 1961 (bartender)
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1961, 1962
Laramie (TV) - 1962
The Virginian (TV) - 1962, 1963
The Rifleman (TV) - 1963
7 Faces of Dr. Lao - 1964 (cowboy)
Daniel Boone (TV) - 1964-1969 (Cincinnatus)
The Glory Guys - 1965 (Karl Harpane)
The Big Valley (TV) - 1965 (Abner Wirth)
Daniel Boone: Frontier Trail Rider - 1966 (Cincinnatus)
Bonanza (TV) - 1966 (Jenkins)
Dundee and the Culhane (TV) - 1967
Hot Lead and Cold Feet - 1978 (saloon patron)

RIP Hans Schweiger

Viennese actor Heinrich Schweiger died today, Tuesday, July 14 at noon in a Salzburg hospital, of heart failure due to heavy bleeding in the brain, he was 77. The Burgtheater honor member belonged to the acting group since 1949 and played many classical roles of world literature suchas Shakespeare’s “Othello” and Richard III and appeared in “Don Carlos”.

Schweiger was born July 23, 1931 in Vienna and studied there at the Max Reinhardt seminar. He debuted at the age of 18 at the Burgtheater. Schweiger, which was awarded the Kainz medal among other things, and participated for many years in the Salzburger festivals and was seen in numerous television programs and films. Among his cinema successes among other things were leading roles in "Franz Schubert - ein unvollendetes Leben” (1957) and Franz Antel’s film series "Der Bockerer".
Schweiger appeared in one Euro-western “Cry of the Black Wolves” (1972).


SCHWEIGER, Heinrich
Born: 7/23/1931, Vienna, Austria
Died: 7/14/2009, Salzburg, Austria

Heinrich Schweiger's western - actor:
Cry of the Black Wolves - 1972 (Sam Jenkins)

Monday, July 13, 2009

RIP Joe Bowman

'The Straight Shooter' Joe Bowman dies
HOUSTON — Marksman Joe Bowman, known as Houston's world-famous "The Straight Shooter," has died. He was 84.

Bowman died Monday in his sleep at a hotel during a trip back to Houston from a series of exhibitions and was in good health overall, his wife Betty Reid-Bowman told the Houston Chronicle.

Joe Bowman was a Tennessee-born bootmaker turned shooting expert who once made a pair of boots for Roy Rogers. In his Wild West exhibitions, Bowman could hit an aspirin tossed in the air and a playing card’s edge from 50 paces.

Bowman, who called himself the Straight Shooter and the Master of Triggernometry, performed at gun shows, rodeos and conventions across the country. He taught gun handling to Robert Duvall ("Lonesome Dove"), James Arness ("Gunsmoke") and Jock Mahoney ("Yancy Derringer"), among many other Hollywood stars. In addition, he taught FBI agents and police officers the finer points of handling a gun, including what he called "instinct shooting" -- relying on the eye and aligning the body correctly rather than taking the extra few seconds to aim down the gun sight. I've seen fast, I've seen faster, I've seen fastest, and then I've seen Joe Bowman," said actor James Drury, who starred in the television series "The Virginian" and got to know Bowman in Hollywood in the 1970s. "He was incredible." Drury described how the sharpshooter could fire three shots at 30 paces through the middle of a 50-cent piece in a fraction of a second. "It was all in such a blur you couldn't even catch it on film," he said in an interview.

Besides his wife, he is survived by son, Mark M. Bowman II, and daughter, Jan Bowman, of Dallas.

RIP Neil Munro

Neil Munro, a Canadian actor and playwright who had been a resident director at the Shaw Festival since the 1990s, died Monday. He was 62.

Munro died at University Hospital in London, Ont., after a lengthy illness, according to a statement from the Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont.

Munro was a familiar face to Canadians for playing the title role in the TV movie Beethoven Lives Upstairs, as well as film roles in The Jonah Look and Dancing in the Dark.

He also appeared on the small screen on series such as Night Heat, Ray Bradbury Theatre, The Twilight Zone and RoboCop.

But most of his career was spent in the theatre, including a tour as Hamlet with the National Arts Centre of Ottawa and appearances at Stratford, Citadel Theatre in Edmonton, Theatre Calgary, Tarragon Theatre and Toronto Free Theatre.

Shaw Festival artistic director Jackie Maxwell remembered Munro on Monday for his passion for theatre and love of actors.

"As a director he had a vision that was unique — blending extraordinarily detailed preparation with brilliant and at times outrageous ideas, always in the service of illuminating and revitalizing each play," she said.

"As resident director, his commitment to and love for the ensemble and all it stood for was clear daily as was his brilliant skeptical humour which unsuccessfully hid his true warmth and empathy."

Munro most recently directed Somerset Maugham's The Circle and Tennessee Williams' Summer and Smoke (2007) at the Shaw Festival.

His other directing credits included The Constant Wife, Man and Superman, The Man Who Came to Dinner, All My Sons, Joy, The Petrified Forest and the North American premiere of Lord of the Flies.

He set a production of Shaw's Saint Joan in contemporary times and had the Joan of Arc character dress in a paratrooper's outfit.

For Citadel and Canadian Stage, he directed A Delicate Balance.

Munro was born in 1947 in Musselburgh, Scotland, but moved to Toronto at an early age.

He graduated from the National Theatre School in 1967 and worked on stages across Canada.

In addition to acting and directing, Munro also wrote for the stage. For the Shaw, he adapted George Feydeau's C'est une femme du monde as Something on the Side as well as Ibsen's Rosmersholm.

Munro received a best new play Dora Award for his work on Bob's Kingdom at Factory Theatre and a best director Dora Award for Hamlet's Room, a 1991 adaptation of Hamlet that he wrote and directed.

He was also a Chalmers Award nominee for best new play for Extreme Close Up.

Munro was predeceased by his wife Carole Galloway and is survived by his sister Anna Munro, nephew John Munro and his mother-in-law Stella Galloway and sister-in-law Jackie Martinez.


MUNRO, Neil
Born: 1947, Musselburgh, Scotland, U.K.
Died: 6/13/2009, London, Ontario, Canada

Neil Munro's western - actor:
Tales of the Klondike (TV) - 1981

RIP Thomas Grace

Thomas (Tuck) Grace, 84, formerly of Memphis, TN died July 7th in his Manhattan, New York home. As an Army Sgt, Mr. Grace served his country in Italy during WWII. He was a graduate of the University of Memphis; then in 1951 relocated to New York City to pursue his career in acting. A member of the Screen Actors Guild and AEA, his credits include performances in Blazing Saddles, Splendor in the Grass, A Face in the Crowd as well as roles in The Edge of Night and The Guiding Light. His latest performance was in My Fair Lady in Chicago, IL. Mr. Grace is survived by seven nieces and nephews. There will be a graveside service held Monday, July 13th at 12:00 Noon, at Calvary Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to St. Peter Village in Memphis, TN. Canale Funeral Directors 901-452-6400


GRACE, Thomas 'Tuck'
Born: 1925, Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.A.
Died: 7/7/2009, Manhattan, New York, U.S.A.

Thomas Grace's western - actor:
Blazing Saddles - 1974 (bit part)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

RIP Ric Hardman

Ric Hardman, writer, dies at 84

July 12, 2009

Ric Hardman - Screenwriter also wrote novels

Ric Hardman, 84, a writer of screenplays, TV scripts and novels,
mostly in the western genre, died in his sleep June 29 at his home in
Los Angeles, his son Chris said. He had cancer.

For the big screen, Hardman wrote "Gunman's Walk," a 1958 western
starring Van Heflin and Tab Hunter, and "The Rare Breed," another
western from 1966 featuring James Stewart.

In the early 1960s, Hardman wrote for the western TV series "Lawman"
using his name as well as a pen name, Bronson Howitzer.

He later turned to writing novels, including "Fifteen Flags," a 1968
story about American troops fighting in Siberia during the Russian
Civil War of 1919-20, and "Sunshine Rider," a 1998 novel that Hardman
called the first vegetarian western and a Boston Globe reviewer called
"delicious whimsy."

Richard Hardman was born Nov. 8, 1924, in Seattle. He served in the
Marines during World War II and studied at the University of
Washington and UCLA's film school before starting his writing career.


HARDMAN, Ric alias Bronson Howitzer real name Richard Hardman
Born: 11/8/1924, Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.
Died: 6/29/2009, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

Ric Hardman/Bronson Howitzer's westerns - production assistant, writer:
The Tin Star - 1957 [production assistant]
Gunman's Walk - 1958 [writer]
Lawman - 1959, 1960, 1961 [writer]
Cheyenne (TV) - 1960 [writer]
Sugarfoot (TV) - 1960 [writer]
Rawhide (TV) - 1962 [writer]
Showdown - 1963 [writer]
Laredo (TV) - 1965, 1966 [writer]
The Rare Breed - 1966 [writer]
The Cowboys (TV) - 1974 [writer]
Alias Smith and JOnes (TV) - 1971 [writer]

Friday, July 10, 2009

RIP Charles Eastman


His film credits include 'The All-American Boy' and 'Little Fauss and Big Halsy.'

By Dennis McLellan
July 10, 2009
LA Times

Charles Eastman, a playwright and screenwriter whose credits included the 1970s films "The All-American Boy" and "Little Fauss and Big Halsy," has died. He was 79.

Eastman, the brother of the late "Five Easy Pieces" screenwriter Carole Eastman, died July 3 of complications from heart disease at Brotman Medical Center in Culver City, said Dave Schultz, a friend.

A Hollywood native, Eastman began writing in the late 1950s and had several of his plays produced by Los Angeles little theater groups beginning in the early '60s.

He launched his screenwriting career in the mid-'60s as an uncredited script doctor on films such as "The Americanization of Emily," "The Cincinnati Kid" and "This Property Is Condemned."

A decade later, a Times writer described Eastman during the '60s as "a gifted and eccentric writer who turned down offers by major studios and stars to option his original screenplays unless he could direct them himself."

However, Sidney J. Furie wound up directing Eastman's original screenplay for "Little Fauss and Big Halsy," a 1970 movie starring Robert Redford as a motorcycle racer.

"The All-American Boy," a 1973 film about a promising small-town boxer starring Jon Voight, was Eastman's first -- and only -- film credit as a director.

His third and final screenwriting credit was "Second-Hand Hearts," a 1981 film directed by Hal Ashby and starring Robert Blake and Barbara Harris. It was based on Eastman's one-act play "The Hamster of Happiness," which aired on "NBC Experiment in Television" in 1968.

Screenwriter Robert Towne, who met Eastman in the '60s, recalled how impressed he was by an early Eastman screenplay that never made it to the big screen: "Honeybear,I Think I Love You," the story of a disturbed young man's obsession with a girl.

"For me, it was quite a revelation because it was the first contemporary screenplay I had read that just opened up the possibilities of everything that you could put into a screenplay in terms of language and the observations of contemporary life," Towne said this week.

"It was a stunning piece of work, and I think it influenced a lot of us, even though it wasn't made," Towne said. "Everybody tried to get it made, but Charlie was very particular about how it was going to be made, and in some ways I think he kept it from being made.

"Charlie was an original, that's all. He used language in a way that I hadn't seen used before."

Towne said Eastman was "very particular, very quirky, very much like his sister," who wrote "Five Easy Pieces," starring Jack Nicholson, under the pen name Adrien Joyce.

"I think she was writing about Charlie in some ways," said Towne. "Charlie was just one of those shadowy figures that I think cast a longer shadow over most of us than was generally recognized."

One of four children, Eastman was born Sept. 18, 1929, into a family employed in the movie business: His father was a grip at Warner Bros. and his mother was Bing Crosby's longtime secretary.

As a young teenager, Eastman acted in little theater. While attending Los Angeles City College, he worked as a film extra and had a stint as a stand-in for Jerry Lewis. He later worked in the script departments of NBC and CBS.

Among Eastman's plays are "The UnAmerican Cowboy" and "Busy Bee Good Food All Night Delicious."

He also wrote short stories, including "Yellow Flags," which was published in Atlantic Monthly and included in the 1993 "O. Henry Prize Stories."

Since undergoing a quadruple heart bypass several years ago, Eastman wrote three screenplays that so far are unproduced.

"Charlie just sat in front of a computer every day and wrote," said Schultz. "It was his life."

Eastman, whose sister died in 2004, had no immediate surviving family members.

A memorial service is planned for August.


EASTMAN, Charles
Born: 9/18/1929, Hollywood, California, U.S.A.
Died: 7/3/2009, Culver City, California, U.S.A.

Charles Eastman's westerns - actor:
Ride in the Whirlwind - 1965 (drummer)
The Shooting - 1967 (bearded man)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

RIP Whitey Hughes

He was born Robert James “Whitey” Hughes, on November 9, 1920, in Arkoma, Oklahoma, on the Arkansas/Oklahoma border, near Ft. Smith. Whitey was raised on a farm where he learned to plow and drive teams as well as ride and break horses with his Dad. The family moved to California in 1936 when Whitey was just 16 years old. He graduated from Fremont High School in Los Angeles. Already an accomplished livestock teamster because of his farm upbringing, Whitey found his way into the film business in 1947 as a full-fledged Screen Actors Guild member.

From 1948 through 1953 Whitey worked for Robert Gilbert Productions as a stuntman and double for such stars its Reno Browne and Lee "Lasses" White in "Red Rock Outlaw" ('50). At the same time Whitey was doing loads of stunts on Johnny Carpenter's low budget westerns like "Badman's Gold" (‘51) and "Son of a Renegade" ('53). Whitey recalls his first location job was in Lone Pine, doubling leading lady, Lynne Roberts in Tim Holt's "Dynamite Pass" ('50).

Whitey was often called upon to double for women in these early days and would eventually do stunts for such luminaries as Rita Hayworth, Stephanie Powers, Barbara Hershey, Anne Baxter, Lana Turner, Kathleen Crowley and Virginia Mayo ("Along the Great Divide", again on location in Lone Pine). Whitey's credits include work on "The Wild One" with Marlon Brando, "Sitting Bull" with Dale Robertson, "Darby O'Gill and the Little People", "Charge at Feather River" with Guy Madison, "Geronimo" with Chuck Connors and Ross Martin, and Sam Peckinpah's "Wild Bunch".

Whitey was Johnny Crawford's double for four years on TV's "Rifleman" as well as Bobby Diamond's double during the run of the "Fury" TV series. Whitey also worked on "U.S. Marshal", "Californians", "MacKenzie's Raiders", "Black Saddle", "Wyatt Earp", "Lassie", "Rawhide", "Bonanza", "Monroes", "Hondo", "Gunsmoke" ... and hundreds more including work for both Roy [Rogers] and Gene [Autry] on their respective series. His multitude of work is only highlighted in this article. For terrific stunt viewing, I recommend watching Whitey in action in almost every episode of "The Wild Wild West", which he coordinated for four seasons ('65-'68). Whitey and his stunt crew do some amazing action sequences.

Whitey spent '70 - '71 preparing his own production, Smoke In the Wind", which, sadly, was not well distributed. It starred John Russell, Walter Brennan and John Ashley. When western work petered out in the '70s, Whitey worked on series and films such as "Omega Man", "Harper Valley P.T.A.", "Spiderman", "Wonder Woman", "B. J. and the Bear", "Buck Rogers", "Father Murphy", "Fall Guy", "Blue and the Gray", "Little House on the Prairie" and many others. At 77, Whitey has been an active stuntman for 50 years and still works when he feels like it. He performed a saddle fall for Buck Henry in "Keep the Change" a couple of years ago and was part of the number one film of 1997, "Men in Black".

Whitey Huges passed away at home in his sleep on July 7, 2009, he was 87. Whitey was regarded as one of the greatest stuntmen of all time and one of the nicest gentlemen you would ever hope to meet - Boyd Magers


Robert James ‘Whitey’ Hughes
Born: 11/9/1920, Arkoma, Oklahoma, U.S.A.
Died: 7/7/2009, Arizona, U.S.A.

Whitey Hughes westerns – producer, stunt coordinator, actor, stuntman
Valiant Hombre – 1948 (townsman)
Red Rock Outlaw – 1950 [stunts]
Fence Riders – 1950 (deputy) [stunts]
The Silver Bandit – 1950 [stunts]
Dynamite Pass – 1950 [stunts]
I Killed Geronimo – 1950 (trooper)
The Gene Autry Show (TV) – 1950 (townsman)
Border Outlaws – 1950 (Joe)
The Range Rider (TV) – 1951 (townsman)
Badman’s Gold – 1951 [stunts]
Along the Great Divide – 1951 [stunts]
Gold Raiders – 1951 [gold guard]
Cattle Queen – 1951 [henchman]
The Roy Rogers Show (TV) – 1951 [stunts]
Stage to Blue River – 1951 (henchman) [stunts]
Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok (TV) – 1952 (henchman)
Buffalo Bill in Tomahawk Territory – 1952 [stunts]
Son of the Renegade – 1953 (The Long-Haired Kid)
The Charge at Feather River – 1953 [stunts]
Sitting Bull – 1954 [stunt coordinator]
Outlaw Treasure – 1955 (henchman) [stunts]
The Life and Legend of Wyatt Earp (TV) – 1955 [stunts]
I Killed Wild Bill Hickok – 1956 (henchman)
Giant – 1956 [stunts]
Westward Ho the Wagons! 1956 [stunts]
Sheriff of Cochise (TV) – 1957 (barfly)
The Californians (TV) – 1958 [stunts]
Wanted: Dead or Alive (TV) – 1958, 1959 (townsman)
The Rifleman (TV) – 1959 (townsman) [stunts]
Ole Rex – 1961 [actor]
Geronimo – 1962 (corporal) [stunts]
The Night Rider (TV) – 1962 (Pete)
Major Dundee – 1965 (Confederate trooper) [stunts]
The Glory Guys – 1965 [stunts]
Branded (TV) – 1966 (townsman)
Bonanza (TV) – 1966, 1967 (townsman)
Dundee and the Culhane (TV) – 1967 [stunts]
The Wild Wild West (TV) – 1967, 1968, 1969 [actor, stunts]
The Bandits – 1967 [stunt coordinator]
Guns for San Sebastian – 1968 [stunts]
Here Come the Brides (TV) – 1968 [stunts]
The Wild Bunch – 1969 [stunts]
Gunsmoke (TV) – 1972 (Billy Banner)
Pat Garrett & Billy the Kid – 1973 [stunts]
The Gatling Gun – 1973 [stunts]
Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia – 1974 (bar patron) [stunt coordinator]
Little House on the Prairie (TV) – 1974 [stunts]
Smoke in the Wind – 1975 [producer, actor]
Gone with the West – 1975 (Mimmo’s man)
Barbary Coast (TV) – 1975 [stunts]

Sunday, July 5, 2009

RIP Beth Kosik


Elizabeth A. Belsito Oct. 24, 1904–June 24, 2009 Beth Belsito passed away peacefully in her Saratoga home on June 24, 2009 at the age of 104. She was the eldest of 6 children and grew up in Southern California. In the mid 1920's Beth was an actress who appeared in several silent pictures. Two of Beth's most memorable pictures were "Right of the Strongest" and "Covered Wagon." Beth was routinely referred to as the "Hungarian Mary Pickford" during the 1920's. After retiring from acting, she became the personal secretary for Norma Shearer at MGM. It was here that she met her future husband, Joseph Belsito whom she married in 1935. After World War II, Joe worked as a contractor, and Beth began a long successful career in real estate development. In the 1960's, they moved to Saratoga. Joe passed away in 1980, and Beth continued to manage their real estate holdings into her 90's. Beth was a strong advocate of education. In fact, she attended classes at West Valley College in her seventies. Until recently, Beth attended the Saratoga Senior Center regularly. All who knew Beth will remember her gentle spirit and beautiful smile. She is survived by her three nephews: Kenneth (Peggy) Kosik, John (Donna) Berges, and Steve Triplett; three grand-nephews Timothy and Michael Kosik and John M. Berges; two grand-nieces Carissa (Shawn) Leeser and Larissa (Robert) Wasson; two great-nieces Mackenzie Leeser and Tayler Wasson; and two great-nephews Tyler Leeser and Landen Wasson. Local Arrangements by Darling Fischer. (San Jose Mercury News)


KOSIK, Beth real name BELSITO, Elisabeth A. "Beth" Kosik
Born: 10/24/1904, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.
Died: 6/24/2009, Saratoga, Florida, U.S.A.

Beth Kosik's western - actress:
The Covered Wagon - 1923

Saturday, July 4, 2009

RIP Allen Klein

Former Beatles, Stones manager Allen Klein dies

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Record label mogul Allen Klein, who handled the affairs of both the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, died in New York on Saturday after a battle with Alzheimer's disease, a spokesman said. He was 77.

During a career spanning more than 50 years, the former New Jersey accountant secured a fortune as one of the savviest and most infamous players in the music business.

He played a key role during the bitter demise of the Beatles, coming on board in 1969 at the behest of John Lennon, Ringo Starr and George Harrison. Paul McCartney was fiercely opposed to Klein, preferring the legal expertise of his high-powered father-in-law Lee Eastman. The feud set the scene for the court battle that led to the group's dissolution.

Klein later reunited with Harrison to organize the all-star Concert for Bangladesh show in 1971 concert. It took a decade for the funds to reach the refugees because of complex tax problems. He also continued to work with Lennon and Yoko Ono.

Klein also managed the Rolling Stones during the 1960s and ended up owning the rights to their recordings and copyrights from that decade -- to the eternal regret of Mick Jagger.

Klein produced a trilogy of spaghetti westerns starring and written by Tony Anthony copying Clint Eastwood's The Man With No Name. A Stranger In Town and The Stranger Returns were released in the USA by MGM. A dispute with MGM over the last one, The Silent Stranger, led to it not being released for seven years after production. Klein and Anthony also collaborated on the film Blindman featuring Ringo Starr as a Mexican bandito. Klein also appeared briefly on camera, in a similar role.

He first made his mark in the music industry by auditing record labels on behalf of clients such as Bobby Darin and Connie Francis. When he invariably found that they were owed royalties, he took a percentage of the difference as a fee. he also managed Sam Cooke, helping the R&B star set up his own label and publishing company.

Klein's family-owned ABKCO Music & Records also handled the recordings of such artists as the Animals, Herman's Hermits, Bobby Womack, Marianne Faithfull, the Kinks, Chubby Checker, Bobby Rydell and many others.

He is survived by his wife and three adult children. His funeral will take place in New York on Tuesday.


KLEIN, Allen
Born: 12/18/1931, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.A.
Died: 7/4/2009, New York City, New York, U.S.A.

Allen Klein's westerns - producer, actor:
A Stranger in Town - 1967 [producer]
The Silent Stranger - 1968 [producer]
Blindman - 1971 (fat rifleman) [actor, producer]

Thursday, July 2, 2009

RIP Anna Karen

Actress Anna Karen Morrow dies at 94
Daily News Wire Services


ENCINO - Anna Karen Morrow, an actress who had a regular role on the prime-time soap opera "Peyton Place" and also appeared on Broadway, in films and on numerous other television shows, has died. She was 94.

Morrow died Wednesday, said her son-in-law, Darrell Christian.

Her film credits included "The Price of Fear," which starred Merle Oberon, "The Wrong Man" alongside Henry Fonda and "It Happened in Athens" with Jayne Mansfield.

On "Peyton Place," she played Mrs. Chernak, the Harrington family housekeeper. Morrow also appeared in the TV series "Star Trek," "Gunsmoke," "Hazel" and "The Perry Como Show," and on Broadway in the play "Red Gloves." Before acting, she was a model in New York.

She was the widow of Jeff Morrow, who also acted on stage and screen and was perhaps best known for his performances in several science fiction films that achieved cult status. He died in 1993.

Morrow is survived by her daughter, Lissa Morrow Christian, of New York. The family plans a private memorial Sunday.


KAREN, Anna
Born: 9/20/1914, U.S.A.
Died: 7/1/2009, Woodland Hills, California, U.S.A.

Anna Karen's westerns - actress:
Jefferson Drum (TV) - 1958
The Rebel (TV) - 1961
Wagon Train (TV) - 1962
Gunsmoke (TV) - 1966
The Iron Horse (TV) - 1967

RIP Karl Malden

Oscar-winning actor Karl Malden dies at 97

By BETH HARRIS, Associated Press Writer
LOS ANGELES – Karl Malden, the Academy Award-winning actor whose intelligent characterizations on stage and screen made him a star despite his plain looks, died Wednesday, his family said. He was 97. Malden died of natural causes surrounded by his family at his Brentwood home, they told the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. He served as the academy's president from 1989-92.

"Karl lived a rich, full life," Academy president Sid Ganis said. "He has the greatest and most loving family; a career that has spanned the spectrum of the arts from theater to film and television, to some very famous commercial work."

While he tackled a variety of characters over the years, he was often seen in working-class garb or military uniform. His authenticity in grittier roles came naturally: He was the son of a Czech mother and a Serbian father, and worked for a time in the steel mills of Gary, Ind., after dropping out of college.

Malden said he got his celebrated bulbous nose when he broke it a couple of times playing basketball or football, joking that he was "the only actor in Hollywood whose nose qualifies him for handicapped parking." He liked to say he had "an open-hearth face."

Malden won a supporting actor Oscar in 1951 for his role as Blanche DuBois' naive suitor Mitch in "A Streetcar Named Desire" — a role he also played on Broadway.
He was nominated again as best supporting actor in 1954 for his performance as Father Corrigan, a fearless, friend-of-the-workingman priest in "On the Waterfront." In both movies, he costarred with Marlon Brando.

"When you worked with him, he was the character," said Eva Marie Saint, who garnered a supporting actress Oscar for her role in "Waterfront." "He was the consummate actor and he loved acting. He was dear and smart. Whatever he did he enjoyed life."
Among Malden's more than 50 film credits were: "Patton," in which he played Gen. Omar Bradley, "Pollyanna," "Fear Strikes Out," "The Sting II," "Bombers B-52," "Cheyenne Autumn," and "All Fall Down."

One of his most controversial films was "Baby Doll" in 1956, in which he played a dullard husband whose child bride is exploited by a businessman. It was condemned by the Catholic Legion of Decency for what was termed its "carnal suggestiveness." The story was by "Streetcar" author Tennessee Williams.

Malden gained perhaps his greatest fame as Lt. Mike Stone in the 1970s television show "The Streets of San Francisco," in which Michael Douglas played the veteran detective's junior partner.

"Karl `The Mentor' Malden was a great actor, father and husband. I admired and loved him deeply," Douglas, who was in Europe, said through his publicist.

Douglas saluted Malden last month when he received the American Film Institute's Lifetime Achievement Award.

"It was Karl who, more than anyone, got me to understand that an actor is just one part of a whole team that makes a TV series or movie work," Douglas said in the upcoming July 19 airing of the event on TV Land.

In the '70s, Malden gained a lucrative 21-year sideline and a place in pop culture with his "Don't leave home without them" ads for American Express.

"The Streets of San Francisco" earned him five Emmy nominations. He won one for his role as a murder victim's father out to bring his former son-in-law to justice in the 1985 miniseries "Fatal Vision." He and Saint played husband and wife.

Malden played Barbra Streisand's stepfather in the 1987 film "Nuts;" Adm. Elmo Zumwalt Jr. in the 1988 TV film "My Father, My Son;" and Leon Klinghoffer, the cruise ship passenger murdered by terrorists in 1985, in the 1989 TV film "The Hijacking of the Achille Lauro."

He acted sparingly in recent years, appearing in 2000 in a small role on TV's "The West Wing."

In 2004, Malden received the Screen Actors Guild's Lifetime Achievement Award, telling the group in his acceptance speech that "this is the peak for me."
Malden first gained prominence on Broadway in the late 1930s, making his debut in "Golden Boy" by Clifford Odets. It was during this time that he met Elia Kazan, who later was to direct him in "Streetcar" and "Waterfront."

He steadily gained more prominent roles, with time out for service in the Army in World War II (and a role in an Army show, "Winged Victory.")

"A Streetcar Named Desire" opened on Broadway in 1947 and went on to win the Pulitzer Prize and New York Drama Critics Circle awards. Brando's breakthrough performance might have gotten most of the attention, but Malden did not want for praise. Once critic called him "one of the ablest young actors extant."

Among his other stage appearances were "Key Largo," "Winged Victory," Arthur Miller's "All My Sons," "The Desperate Hours," and "The Egghead."

Malden was known for his meticulous preparation, studying a script carefully long before he stepped into his role.

"I not only figure out my own interpretation of the role, but try to guess other approaches that the director might like. I prepare them, too," he said in a 1962 Associated Press interview. "That way, I can switch in the middle of a scene with no sweat."

"There's no such thing as an easy job, not if you do it right," he added.

He was born Mladen Sekulovich in Chicago on March 22, 1912. Malden regretted that in order to become an actor he had to change his name. He insisted that Fred Gwynne's character in "On the Waterfront" be named Sekulovich to honor his heritage.

The family moved to Gary, Ind., when he was small. He quit his steel job 1934 to study acting at Chicago's Goodman Theatre "because I wasn't getting anywhere in the mills," he recalled.

"When I told my father, he said, `Are you crazy? You want to give up a good job in the middle of the Depression?' Thank god for my mother. She said to give it a try."
In 2005, the U.S. Postal Service honored Malden by naming the post office in Brentwood to honor his achievement in film and his contributions to the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee, which meets to discuss ideas for stamp designs.

Malden helped create the "Legends of Hollywood" stamp series that has featured Marilyn Monroe, James Dean and Gary Cooper, and another celebrating Hollywood's behind-the-scenes workers.

"As a kid, all the letters that would come from the old country, he would see the stamps and they always intrigued him," said David Failor, executive director of stamp services for the Postal Service. "He was such a regular guy."

Malden and his wife, Mona, a fellow acting student at the Goodman, had one of Hollywood's longest marriages, having celebrated their 70th anniversary in December.
"That was sort of the last goodbye," said Saint, who attended a party in the couple's honor. "His wish was, `After I die, I don't want you to do anything but have a party.' So another party is coming up."

Besides his wife, Malden is survived by daughters Mila and Cara, his sons-in-law, three granddaughters, and four great grandchildren.


MALDEN, Karl real name Mladen Seklovich
Born: 3/22/1912, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
Died: 7/1/2009, Brentwood, California, U.S.A.

Karl Malden's westerns - actor, director:
The Gunfighter - 1950 (Mac) [actor]
The Hanging Tree - 1959 (Frenchy Plante) [director], [actor]
One-Eyed Jacks - 1961 (Sheriff Dad Longworth) [actor]
How the West Was Won - 1962 (Zebulon Prescott) [actor]
Cheyenne Autumn - 1964 (Captain Wessels) [actor]
Nevada Smith - 1966 (Tom Fitch) [actor]
The Adventures of Bullwhip Griffin - 1967 (Judge Higgins) [actor]
Blue - 1968 (Doc Morton) [actor]
Wild Rovers - 1971 (Walter Buckman) [actor]

RIP Harve Presnell


Golden Globe winning actor Harve Presnell died June 30th. The 75 year-old singer and actor of Broadway and films died of pancreatic cancer at St. John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California..

He won a Golden Globe in 1965 for being the industry's Most Promising Newcomer.
Presnell's talents weren't relegated to the big screen. In fact, he will likely be best remembered for his work in the theater. His booming baritone graced such Broadway musicals as 'The Unsinkable Molly Brown' and 'Gone With the Wind,' but his biggest role on Broadway came in 'Annie,' which he played Daddy Warbucks in numerous productions.

Television was also kind to the actor, with memorable roles in recent years on 'Dawson's Creek' and the short-lived series 'Andy Barker P.I.'

The actor was born George Harvey Presnell on Sept. 14, 1933, in Modesto, Calif. He went to the University of Southern California on a sports scholarship. After three weeks, the head of the music school heard him sing and offered him the same scholarship for music.

He soon quit school and spent three seasons singing in Europe. And it was in Berlin that Willson, the composer of "Molly Brown," first heard him sing.


PRESNELL, Harve real name George Harvey Presnell
Born: 9/14/1933, Modesto, California, U.S.A.
Died: 6/30/2009, Santa Monica, California, U.S.A.

Harve Presnell’s westerns – actor:
The Unsinkable Molly Brown – 1964 (‘Leadville’ Johnny Brown)
The Glory Guys – 1965 (Sol Rogers)
Paint Your Wagon – 1969 (Rotten Luck Willie)
Everything That Rises (TV) (Garth)

RIP Jan Rubes

Opera singer and actor Jan Rubes dies at 89

Jan Rubes had a varied career as a singer, actor and broadcaster.

Jan Rubes, the Czech-born artist who had a career in Canada as an opera singer, actor and broadcaster, has died, his family announced Tuesday. He was 89.

cause of death was complications from a stroke he had suffered earlier in June.

Rubes was a founding member of the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto, performing for the company more than 1,000 times between 1949 and 1989.

He also took part in the very first CBC telecast with Glenn Gould in 1953.
He came to wider renown as host of the weekly radio show The Songs of My People and later had a career as an actor, starring in the film Witness.

Rubes was born in Volyne, Czechoslovakia, on June 6, 1920. He made his opera debut in 1940 in Prague, as Basilio in The Barber of Seville and became a leading singer with the Prague Opera.

A bass singer, he represented Czechoslovakia at the International Music Festival at Geneva in 1948 and was a first-prize winner.

In 1948, Rubes emigrated to Canada and began to sing with the Royal Conservatory Opera and the CBC Opera.

He was an original member of the Opera Festival Company of Toronto, which later became the COC.

His repertoire included roles in six languages, including Mephisto in Faust, Bluebeard in Bluebeard's Castle, Boris in Boris Godunov, Daland in The Flying Dutchman and Figaro and Bartolo in The Marriage of Figaro.

In the 1960s, Rubes began appearing on TV shows and later moved into feature films. (CBC Still Photo Collection) Rubes was also in demand as a guest soloist with orchestras across Canada and in New York, Frankfurt and Central America.

In 1974-6, he served as the COC's touring director and he also directed COC productions such as La Bohème and Ariadne auf Naxos.

From 1953 to 1963, Rubes was host of CBC's Songs of My People and made two recordings based on music he played and sang on air.

That began an interest in electronic media that led him to TV appearances on Parade, L'Heure du concert and as host of Thursday Night and of Sunday Afternoon at the Opera.

In the 1960s, he also began acting, appearing on TV programs such as The Forest Rangers, King of Kensington and later, Due South.

In 1985, he landed a role as the Amish grandfather in Witness, starring Harrison Ford.

That opened the door to feature films and over the next 20 years he appeared in more than 40 films, including Dead of Winter, The Outside Chance of Maximilian Glick, One Magic Christmas, Deceived and Never Too Late.

He earned a Genie Award for his role in the film Something About Love and a Gemini for best supporting actor in TV series Two Men.

Rubes also won the Queen's Jubilee Medal in 1978, the Canadian Centennial Medal in 1967 and the 1991 Earl Grey Award for lifetime achievement in television.

In 1995, at the age of 75, Rubes starred in his first Broadway play, James Lapine's Twelve Dreams at the Lincoln Theatre Centre.

He was artist-in-residence at Wilfrid Laurier University in 1981 and taught at the University of Windsor in 1985.

Rubes was married to actress Susan Douglas, founder of Toronto's Young People's Theatre and former head of CBC radio drama.

He is survived by his wife, sons Jonathan and Tony and three grandsons. He was predeceased by his son Christopher in 1996.


RUBES, Jan
Born: 6/6/1920, Volyne, Czechoslovakia
Died: 6/29/2009, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Jan Rubes' western - actor:
By Way of the Stars (TV) - 1992 (Hausiere Nathan)