Saturday, February 29, 2020

Around the Blogosphere This Week

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

...A new book from Bear Manor Media: ADVENTURES IN HOLLYWOOD by Bob Koster, son of the late director Henry Koster. I've seen Bob speak multiple times, including at a 2018 screening of his father's Deanna Durbin film THREE SMART GIRLS (1936), and he's very knowledgeable about his father's career. I photographed him with Mitzi Gaynor at the 2013 TCM Classic Film Festival.

...Director William Wellman was born on Leap Day in 1896. This morning I celebrated his birthday with an extended Twitter thread filled with links and photos.

...Leonard and Jessie Maltin have announced the second edition of MaltinFest, to be held this year from May 1st through 3rd at the TCL Chinese 6 Theatres multiplex on Hollywood Boulevard.

...VCI Entertainment is releasing some interesting classic-era Mexican films, including UNA FAMILIAR DE TANTAS (1949), aka A FAMILY LIKE ANY OTHER, and Pedro Armendariz in EL BRUTO (1953), aka THE BRUTE.

...My friend Kristina has a post on her Favorite Film Discoveries of 2019 at Rupert Pupkin Speaks. I'm looking forward to catching GUNFIGHT AT COMANCHE CREEK (1963) with Audie Murphy soon. There are a couple other titles on her list which particularly caught my eye as well. Incidentally, I've submitted my own Favorite Discoveries list and will be sharing it here once it's up! (March 5th Update: Here is the link to my list, which was posted today!)

...A few days ago I enjoyed reading a wonderful tribute to character actor-writer Leo Gordon at Jeff Arnold's West.

...More announcements of upcoming Blu-ray releases from Kino Lorber Studio Classics: Rock Hudson in Douglas Sirk's TAZA, SON OF COCHISE (1954) on May 26th and Alastair Sim in AN INSPECTOR CALLS (1954) on May 5th.

...Last week I mentioned a digital restoration of PANDORA AND THE FLYING DUTCHMAN (1951), starring Ava Gardner and James Mason, which has been screening in West Los Angeles. According to, it will be available on Blu-ray later this year from the Cohen Media Group.

...I enjoyed Glenn Erickson's thoughtful review of CANYON PASSAGE (1946) at CineSavant. I anticipate reviewing the new Kino Lorber Blu-ray release in the next few weeks. It will be released on March 10th.

...Jessica Pickens just wrote about Robert Montgomery and his work in John Ford's THEY WERE EXPENDABLE (1945) for the TCM Tumblr page.

...Attention Southern Californians: MARY POPPINS (1964) will be screened at the El Capitan Theatre on March 4th. It will be preceded by a special presentation by the Walt Disney Archives...On Tuesday, April 14th, Kimberly Truhler of GlamAmor will be giving a presentation at the Hollywood Heritage Museum on some of the costumes to be seen in films which will screen at that week's TCM Classic Film Festival. Kim has done this for several years but it hasn't fit with my previous festival week work schedules, so I'm happy to say I'll be attending this year!

...Notable Passings: Diana Serra Cary, known in her childhood as Baby Peggy Montgomery, has passed on at the age of 101. Her book THE HOLLYWOOD POSSE has been on my shelf since around the time it was published in 1975; it was one of the first film books I read. At a 2018 Cinecon Festival screening of her film HELEN'S BABIES (1924) I was in the audience singing "Happy Birthday" which was recorded and sent to her to celebrate her centennial birthday.

...More Notable Passings: Ben Cooper (seen at left), who appeared in many Westerns including JOHNNY GUITAR (1954), has died at 86...Claudette Nevins, who worked steadily in episodic television for over 30 years, passed on at 82. More information on her career is at her website...Soap opera creator Lee Phillip Bell has died at 91. Survivors include her daughter, Emmy-winning actress Lauralee Bell, and daughter-in-law Colleen Bell, the current director of the California Film Commission.

...For additional recent links of interest to classic film fans, please check out my February 22nd roundup.

Have a great week!


Blogger DKoren said...

Awww, sorry to hear about Ben Cooper passing. Always liked him.

5:12 PM  
Blogger john k said...

Hi Laura,
Thanks for highlighting Kristina's piece-her blog has been so quiet recently and that's
a shame-I enjoyed reading her diverse discoveries so much.
I also enjoyed Margot's amazing take on RAW DEAL and was looking for you to make a "guest
appearance" Lots of "Laura Friendly" stuff here-Eagle Lion,REPEAT PERFORMANCE-with fantastic
Barry Lane background info, and Dorothy Patrick!
I may have got this wrong but I remember you featuring REPEAT PERFORMANCE-possibly a
restored viewing-hopefully Classicflix will release this one sometime-at any rate I know
you are a fan of this film.

6:35 AM  
Blogger Kristina said...

Thanks Laura for the mention! The Year-ender is always a fun list to put together but even better is getting viewing ideas from all the other posts there, and from your posts too.
I love Glenn Erickson’s reviews, been a while since I saw Canyon Passage.. super informative roundup as always, so nice to see them come back more regularly again,

9:40 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Hi Deb! I was sorry to hear of his passing as well. One by one they're leaving us...

Thanks, John. Like you I miss Kristina's blogging! So it was great fun to read her list.

Thanks for steering me to the latest post by Margot at Down These Mean Streets. As I mentioned there, I've heard rumor REPEAT PERFORMANCE may be released on Blu-ray by Flicker Alley but that is not confirmed. I've seen the restored print of REPEAT PERFORMANCE at three different festivals (my review from the UCLA Festival of Preservation is here) -- it's gorgeous and I love the film.

You're so welcome, Kristina! I love reading all the suggestions of "best viewing" too. And doesn't Glenn do a nice job at his site? I make sure to visit his site every Tuesday and Saturday. :)

Thanks to you all!

Best wishes,

7:39 PM  

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