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4 items from 2016

Exploring Disney's fascinating dark phase of the 70s and 80s

6 December 2016 8:12 AM, PST | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Ryan Lambie Dec 7, 2016

Space horror in The Black Hole. Animated death in The Black Cauldron. Ryan looks back at a unique period in Disney's filmmaking history...

When George Lucas started writing Star Wars in the early 70s, the space saga was intended to fill a void left behind by westerns, pirate movies and the sci-fi fantasy of old matinee serials. "Disney had abdicated its rein over the children's market," Lucas once said, according to Peter Biskind's book, Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, "and nothing had replaced it."

See related  Close To The Enemy episode 4 review Close To The Enemy episode 3 review Close To The Enemy episode 2 review Close To The Enemy episode 1 review

Indeed, Disney was one of many Hollywood studios that Lucas had approached with Star Wars and they, just like Universal, United Artists and everyone other than 20th Century Fox boss Alan Ladd Jr, had turned it down flat. »

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Count Arthur Strong and the comforts of traditional sitcom

25 September 2016 3:23 AM, PDT | Den of Geek | See recent Den of Geek news »

Louisa Mellor Sep 26, 2016

When life hurts, well-crafted, traditional sitcom like Count Arthur Strong can be an indispensable salve…

There’s a period a little while after a family death, after the days spent in a traffic jam of errands, decisions and phone calls, when you have to merge back into the regular lane. Normal life demands to re-start. The fridge needs filling and the lawn needs mowing, even if, impossibly, the person who usually does both has vanished forever.

For my family like most others, normal life means watching television. Telly is the cradle that rocked us through the decades. Whatever happened to us happened against a backdrop of soaps and sitcoms.

Losing our dad though, changed things. In the flayed-skin sensitivity of the days around his funeral, flicking through the channels meant running a gauntlet. A murder on EastEnders brought unwelcome ambulances and coroners back into our living room. »

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Broadway's Secret Weapon

6 May 2016 2:53 AM, PDT | www.culturecatch.com | See recent CultureCatch news »

Drew Hodges is at a loss for words. Asked if he’s surprised at the life he’s leading -- did he imagine he’d grow up to fly around the world orchestrating scenes with great actors and artists for his own wildly influential agency -- he pauses three entire seconds. “I wish I had an answer for you,” he says. “It's like, Come for the veal, stay for the floor show.”

You might not know Drew Hodges’ name, but if you’ve enjoyed some form of popular culture in the past decade, you’re living in a world he helped create. "When I started, the idea of theater was still very much that ‘fabulous invalid’ thing," he says, “sort of dying, old, kind of nostalgic. I was lucky enough to work on a lot of stuff that started to chip away at that."

Twenty years ago, art-directing for his small design firm’s music, »

- Helen Eisenbach

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Michael Crawford to reprise role of Frank Spencer after 40 years off-screen

18 February 2016 3:00 AM, PST | Virgin Media - TV | See recent Virgin Media - TV news »

Michael Crawford is to reprise his role of Frank Spencer for a one-off special of 'Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em'. The 74-year-old actor was last seen playing the loveable buffoon in the hilarious sitcom 40 years ago but is set to return to his routes for a special episode in aid of Sport Relief on March 18. He explained to The Sun newspaper: ''I am delighted to be asked to bring Frank back for Sport Relief.'' The accident-prone character will return alongside his wife Betty, played by Michele Dotrice, as they find themselves in a number of catastrophic situations before meeting top cyclist »

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4 items from 2016

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