Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Around the Blogosphere This Week

Miscellaneous bits of news and fun stuff from around the internet...

...Coming Soon to UCLA: The 2017 UCLA Festival of Preservation opens March 3rd and runs through March 27th. The festival is held every other year; I enjoyed marvelous experiences at the festival in 2011, 2013, and 2015. Titles will include Lubitsch's TROUBLE IN PARADISE (1932) and the noir OPEN SECRET (1948) starring John Ireland and Jane Randolph. More details will be posted here when the complete schedule is available.

...IMDb is shutting down its message boards on February 20th. I was sorry to hear that; although I didn't participate, sometimes I'd find interesting info, especially from people who had personal connections to the making of a film.

...Stephen Bingen is the coauthor of a pair of valuable histories, MGM: HOLLYWOOD'S GREATEST BACKLOT and WARNER BROS.: HOLLYWOOD'S ULTIMATE BACKLOT. He's now cowritten a third book, PARAMOUNT: CITY OF DREAMS, which is currently en route to my mailbox.

...Pitchers and catchers report to spring training in mere days -- I even found a countdown clock online! Getting in the spirit of things, here's a ClassicFlix piece I bookmarked last summer by Rick Brooks on Underrated Baseball Films. I need to get to work on this list as I've only seen THE KID FROM CLEVELAND (1949). I hope to see Harold Lloyd in SPEEDY (1928) at this year's TCM Classic Film Festival.

...The Blonde at the Film takes a look at SKYLARK (1941) starring Claudette Colbert, Ray Milland, and Brian Aherne.

...Recent baking cookbooks of interest: FLAPPER PIE AND A BLUE PRAIRIE SKY: A MODERN BAKER'S GUIDE TO OLD-FASHIONED DESSERTS by Karlynn Johnston, HOW TO BAKE EVERYTHING by Mark Bittman, and SWEETNESS by Christy Jordan.

...I recently came across a 2016 piece by Wade Sheeler of The Retro Set on Clifton's Cafeteria in Los Angeles. I need to visit it sometime...

...I enjoyed a heartwarming story from December about Denzel Washington visiting his childhood librarian for her 99th birthday: "This lady had a profound impact on my life and here I am."

...My friend Stephen of Classic Movie Man is a big fan of Deanna Durbin, and he wrote about her delightful film FIRST LOVE (1939) for last weekend's O Canada! Blogathon.

...I just came across the news that Scott O'Brien published a new biography last year: SYLVIA SIDNEY: PAID BY THE TEAR.

...Many classic film fans such as myself enjoy the Hallmark Channel and its companion channel Hallmark Movies and Mysteries, which have had great success as the "go to" channels on TV for family friendly, quality original films. Net of It's a Wonderful Movie has a photo-filled report from the Hallmark event at last month's Television Critics Association Press Tour. There will be 30 (!) new Christmas movies from Hallmark this year, along with the return of favorite film series including MURDER, SHE BAKED (with Alison Sweeney and Cameron Mathison, seen at right), GARAGE SALE MYSTERY, GOURMET DETECTIVE, and SIGNED, SEALED, DELIVERED.

...My dad passed on this sweet reminiscence by Max Allan Collins about getting to know Barbara Hale and Raymond Burr.

...Here's Marc Myers of JazzWax on the collaboration between Henry Mancini and Lola Albright.

...A tribute to Mary Tyler Moore from Mary Katharine Ham.

...Notable Passings: Film preservationist David Shepard has died at 76. The New York Times has more, and Leonard Maltin pays tribute...Laura Wagner wrote in the January 2017 edition of Classic Images that film and costume design historian David Chierichetti died last November 28th. I was very sorry to hear the news. Chierichetti authored an excellent book on director Mitchell Leisen, which he signed for me during UCLA's 2012 retrospective on the director's work...Dave Dutton, the longtime owner of Dutton's Books in Southern California, recently passed on at 79...While perusing the L.A. Times obituaries I came across the obituary of '40s-'50s bit player Selene Walters Lamm...Animator Hal Geer has died at 100. In his long career he worked for both Disney and Warner Bros.

...For even more classic film links, please visit my January 30th roundup.

Have a great week!


Blogger Stephen Reginald said...

Thanks for the mention, but I'm a big Deanna Durbin "fan," not a big Deanna Durbin! :) Thanks for the tip on Mary Katherine Ham's piece. I admire her greatly.

2:09 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Ha, whoops! Something disappeared in the editing. Fixed now! :) :)

I share your admiration for Mary Katharine. Her recent post about making it through the first year without her husband was very moving.

Best wishes,

2:26 PM  
Blogger John G. said...

I'm VERY disappointed that the IMDb message boards are vanishing (not even being archived--just disappearing). I keep hearing how they're full of trolls and nastiness, but I mainly look at their boards for info (DVD releases and things like that) on old movies and TV shows, and very rarely did I see something objectionable. Maybe the discussions are different for the current innovative breed of blockbuster sequels of sequels of sequels. :-)

And as much as IMDb talks up Facebook and Twitter (yawn), let's face it--most of the info on the classic era of movies and TV shows will never be re-posted on those platforms. All that stuff will be gone just as if it had never existed. At least I just read IMDb message boards and didn't spend time and effort posting there like I did for many years at Television Without Pity (TWoP), which similarly vanished without leaving behind an archive. Oh, well...

3:46 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi John!

It seems like IMDb should at least archive the boards somewhere on the web, closed to new discussion, rather than giving people two weeks to find what they want to save and then "disappearing" them. Having all that information simply vanish without a trace is concerning.

Such a shame about the TWoP boards!!

Best wishes,

8:57 PM  
Blogger mel said...

In my opinion, no better resource on the Internet exists that covers the entire gamut of motion pictures and the film industry than the IMDb - the films themselves, from the beginning of film history to the latest - also those in post-production; complete (or very nearly so) cast and credit lists for each; technical and distribution information and reviews; trivia, quotes and goofs sections etc. At least all these will remain.

I can quite understand their closing of the message boards; many commenters are grossly impolite and even belligerent, using the foulest language in their comments. The problem is that there are no moderators to control it.

If only people could disagree without being disagreeable.

We will miss the boards, but will learn to live without them.

11:12 PM  

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