...Happy 90th birthday to Dick Van Dyke! He celebrated in style with a birthday party at Disneyland today which included a "Let's Go Fly a Kite" singalong and a parade. There was also a dance performance and singalong in his honor yesterday at the Grove in Los Angeles.
...This weekend I watched two favorite films set during the Christmas season, LADY ON A TRAIN (1945) with Deanna Durbin and COVER UP (1949) with Dennis O'Keefe, Barbara Britton, and William Bendix. A pair of wonderful movies which make a great change of pace from the usual Christmas favorites. Highly recommended.
...Speaking of lesser-known Christmas movies, over at Another Old Movie Blog Jacqueline reviews Roy Rogers in the fun TRAIL OF ROBIN HOOD (1950). I reviewed this movie about stolen Christmas trees in 2011.
...The Hollywood Reporter ran a wonderful article on Jeanine Basinger, one of my favorite film historians, whose books have been enlightening and inspiring me since I was first a teenage classic film fan. Many of Jeanine's students at Wesleyan University have gone on to work in the film industry, including Joss Whedon and Michael Bay. I love that she's told her students, "Somebody gets those jobs [in the film industry]. Why not you?" I've said that very thing to our daughter, who is slowly climbing up the rungs in Hollywood.
L.A. Daily News recently ran an article on actress Marsha Hunt.
...The last few years the Air Force Band has developed a great tradition, performing a "flash mob." This year it took place in Union Station in Washington, D.C., and had a '40s theme to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII.
...Leonard Maltin shared a fun account of some of the famous people who have visited his film class at USC this year. Maltin's class is one of those special USC traditions every student should experience. My daughter did!
celebrated his 99th birthday last week, and announced a $15 million donation for the Motion Picture & Television Fund to build an Alzheimer's facility.
...Live streaming of Broadway shows is an intriguing concept.
...Amazon Prime has debuted a streaming partners program, providing viewing content from Starz and Showtime for a monthly fee.
...Frank Sinatra Jr. recently participated in the unveiling of an historical marker in North Carolina honoring his one-time stepmother, Ava Gardner.
...Attention Southern Californians: On January 11th the Academy is screening a restored print of Clara Bow in GET YOUR MAN (1927) at the Linwood Dunn Theater. The film was reconstructed with stills from the Academy Archives filling in missing scenes. Last month Will McKinley wrote about the restoration's premiere at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The Academy will show THE BLAZING TRAIL (1921) with Mary Philbin along with GET YOUR MAN. Although I rarely tend L.A. screenings on Monday evenings, I may try to attend, as Will's account was very interesting. (Update: I've now purchased a ticket, so if all goes well I'll be there!)
...Notable Passing: As mentioned at the end of my TCM Remembers 2015 post, actress Marjorie Lord has passed on at the age of 97.
...For even more classic film links, please visit last week's roundup.
Have a great week!