7 items from 2015
If anyone deserves to write a memoir, it’s Norman Lear, who reinvented television comedy in the 1970s with “All in the Family,” and whose “Even This I Get to Experience,” a how-to book about understanding the TV business, comes out in paperback Oct. 27. Lear was first mentioned in Variety on Nov. 15, 1950, as part of a story about an exodus of L.A. writers moving to New York for TV jobs.
How did you get the New York gig?
Ed Simmons and I had written a routine for Danny Thomas’ nightclub act, which led to New York and Jack Haley’s “Ford Star Review.” Jerry Lewis saw a sketch that he knew he could do better, so he wanted us. McA handled both shows, so it was easy to move over to Martin & Lewis. Within three weeks, we were writing for “The Colgate Comedy Hour.” Suddenly Simmons & Lear were major comedy writers. »
- Tim Gray
As in a great Halloween costume, makeup is an important aspect of film. Join us as we examine 10 films where makeup effects played a very large role.
Using Makeup to Create A Style
Example: Edward Scissorhands (1990)
While Edward Scissorhands may be one of Burton’s most beloved characters because of Johnny Depp’s performance, the character is also memorable for his looks. For starters, there is his birds-nest hair. The wispy cob-webb look not only reassured audiences of Edward’s sad, lonely and parentless existence, but it also became an easy identifier for Burton’s gothic style. Indeed, Edward’s wild, untamed yet solid hairstyle was similar to that of Beetlejuice, whose film came out two years prior, and would be similar to many other characters we would see in later Burton films.
Edward’s pasty white make-up helped audiences to understand that he was not just a normal man. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (G.S. Perno)
Los Angeles' Bendix Building. Photo by Jordan Cronk.The bats have left the bell towerThe victims have been bled Red velvet lines the black boxBela Lugosi's dead —BauhausBela-Bonkers Brit Bloke Brazenly Boosts Bendix-Building Black Bandana!In the annals of Los Angeles crime, it was hardly an episode to titillate James Ellroy. Was it even really a crime? I was on the short stairwell that connects the 11th—the top—floor of the Bendix Building, a Garment District block on the corner of Maple St and 12th St, when I spotted the square of white-patterned black cotton. Into my pocket it rapidly went, compensation for the fact that my quest for rooftop access had been stymied. An orange plastic sign across the door up ahead, warning (bluffing?) of alarms that would ring out if opened, dissuaded further progress. I wasn't too disheartened—my unplanned visit to the Bendix Building had yielded sufficient delights. »
- Neil Young
All week long our writers will debate: Which was the greatest film year of the past half century. Click here for a complete list of our essays. I was one of the first to select years for this particular exercise, which probably allowed me to select the correct year. The answer is, of course, 1974 and all other answers are wrong. No matter what your criteria happens to be, 1974 is going to come out on top. Again, this is not ambiguous or open to debate. We have to start, of course, with the best of the best. "Chinatown" is one of the greatest movies ever made. You can't structure a thriller better than Robert Towne and Roman Polanski do, nor shoot a Los Angeles movie better than John Alonzo has done. Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway give the best performances of their careers, which is no small achievement. If you ask »
- Daniel Fienberg
NBC has given a 10-episode straight-to-series order for Emerald City, a show set within the world of L. Frank Baum's classic tale The Wizard of Oz. The project initially moved forward as a pilot last season, from writers Matthew Arnold and Josh Friedman, although the network didn't pick up the series. The project was reworked by Do No Harm series creator David Schulner, resulting in the dramatic reversal of a straight-to-series order.
Emerald City follows the exploits of 20-year-old Dorothy Gale and her K9 police dog who are swept up by a tornado and taken to a mystical land far away, full of competing kingdoms, lethal warriors, dark magic and a bloody battle for supremacy. The show is said to put a much darker spin on the original Wizard of Oz tale, showcasing the transformation of a young girl into a "headstrong warrior who holds the fate of kingdoms in her hands, »
B&B Wildwood Theatre is having their March Retro Night on Thursday, April 2. They are showing the classic film, The Wizard Of Oz. Shows are at 4pm & 7pm.
This magical cinematic event finds Kansas farm girl Judy Garland (“A Star is Born,” “Meet Me in St. Louis”) caught in a tornado and magically transported to the Land of Oz. Needing help to return home, she is told to follow the Yellow Brick Road and find the powerful Wizard (Frank Morgan). On her perilous journey, she is befriended by the Scarecrow (Ray Bolger), the Tin Man (Jack Haley), and the Cowardly Lion (Bert Lahr) who help her battle the Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) and her flying monkeys. Based on the classic book by Frank L. Baum, “The Wizard of Oz” is a dazzling motion picture achievement, featuring unforgettable songs (including Oscar-winner “Over the Rainbow”), scenery, and costumes.
- Movie Geeks
The Writers Guild of America East has selected Norman Lear as the recipient of its Evelyn F. Burkey Award, which recognizes those who have brought “honor and dignity” to writers.
The trophy will be presented by Bill Moyers at the 67th annual Writers Guild Awards in New York City on Feb. 14 at the Edison Ballroom.
Lear has been a WGA member since 1951. He began his career writing sketches for Jack Haley, Martin and Lewis, and Martha Raye, and created his first television series, “The Deputy,” a Western starring Henry Fonda, in 1959.
Lear’s iconic “All in the Family” debuted in 1971 and won four Emmy Awards for best comedy series, received a Peabody Award and was nominated for 11 WGA awards. Lear followed “All in the Family” with “Maude,” “The Jeffersons,” “Sanford and Son,” “Good Times,” “One Day at a Time” and “Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman.”
He was nominated for an Oscar »
- Dave McNary
7 items from 2015
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