1-50 of 56 names.

Ang Lee

Born in 1954 in Pingtung, Taiwan, Ang Lee has become one of today's greatest contemporary filmmakers. Ang graduated from the National Taiwan College of Arts in 1975 and then came to the U.S. to receive a B.F.A. Degree in Theatre/Theater Direction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a Masters Degree in Film Production at New York University. At NYU, he served as Assistant Director on Spike Lee's student film, Joe's Bed-Stuy Barbershop: We Cut Heads. After Lee wrote a couple of screenplays, he eventually appeared on the film scene with Pushing Hands (aka Pushing Hands), a dramatic-comedy reflecting on generational conflicts and cultural adaptation, centering on the metaphor of the grandfather's Tai-Chi technique of "Pushing Hands". The Wedding Banquet (aka The Wedding Banquet) was Lee's next film, an exploration of cultural and generational conflicts through a homosexual Taiwanese man who feigns a marriage in order to satisfy the traditional demands of his Taiwanese parents. It garnered Golden Globe and Oscar nominations, and won a Golden Bear at the Berlin Film Festival. The third movie in his trilogy of Taiwanese-Culture/Generation films, all of them featuring his patriarch figure Sihung Lung, was Eat Drink Man Woman (aka Eat Drink Man Woman), which received a Best Foreign Film Oscar nomination. Lee followed this with Sense and Sensibility, his first Hollywood-mainstream movie. It acquired a Best Picture Oscar nomination, and won Best Adapted Screenplay, for the film's screenwriter and lead actress, Emma Thompson. Lee was also voted the year's Best Director by the National Board of Review and the New York Film Critics Circle. Lee and frequent collaborator James Schamus next filmed The Ice Storm, an adaptation of Rick Moody's novel involving 1970s New England suburbia. The movie acquired the 1997 Best Screenplay at Cannes for screenwriter James Schamus, among other accolades. The Civil War drama Ride with the Devil soon followed and received critical praise, but it was Lee's Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (aka Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon) that is considered one of his greatest works, a sprawling period film and martial-arts epic that dealt with love, loyalty and loss. It swept the Oscar nominations, eventually winning Best Foreign Language Film, as well as Best Director at the Golden Globes, and became the highest grossing foreign-language film ever released in America. Lee then filmed the comic-book adaptation, Hulk - an elegantly and skillfully made film with nice action scenes. Lee has also shot a short film - Chosen (aka Hire, The Chosen) - and most recently won the 2005 Best Director Academy Award for Brokeback Mountain, a film based on a short story by Annie Proulx. In 2012 Lee directed Life of Pi which earned 11 Academy Award nominations and went on to win the Academy Award for Best Director. In 2013 Ang Lee was selected as a member of the main competition jury at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival.

Frank Capra

One of seven children, Frank Capra was born on May 18, 1897, in Bisacquino, Sicily. On May 10, 1903, his family left for America aboard the ship Germania, arriving in New York on May 23rd. "There's no ventilation, and it stinks like hell. They're all miserable. It's the most degrading place you could ever be," Capra said about his Atlantic passage. "Oh, it was awful, awful. It seems to always be storming, raining like hell and very windy, with these big long rolling Atlantic waves. Everybody was sick, vomiting. God, they were sick. And the poor kids were always crying."

The family boarded a train for the trip to California, where Frank's older brother Benjamin was living. On their journey, they subsisted on bread and bananas, as their lack of English made it impossible for them to ask for any other kind of foodstuffs. On June 3, the Capra family arrived at the Southern Pacific station in Los Angeles, at the time, a small city of approximately 102,000 people. The family stayed with Capra's older brother Benjamin, and on September 14, 1903, Frank began his schooling at the Castelar Elementary school.

In 1909, he entered Los Angeles' Manual Arts High School. Capra made money selling newspapers in downtown L.A. after school and on Saturdays, sometimes working with his brother Tony. When sales were slow, Tony punched Frank to attract attention, which would attract a crowd and make Frank's papers sell quicker. Frank later became part of a two-man music combo, playing at various places in the red light district of L.A., including brothels, getting paid a dollar per night, performing the popular songs. He also worked as a janitor at the high school in the early mornings. It was at high school that he became interested in the theater, typically doing back-stage work such as lighting.

Capra's family pressured him to drop out of school and go to work, but he refused, as he wanted to partake fully of the American Dream, and for that he needed an education. Capra later reminisced that his family "thought I was a bum. My mother would slap me around; she wanted me to quit school. My teachers would urge me to keep going....I was going to school because I had a fight on my hands that I wanted to win."

Capra graduated from high school on January 27, 1915, and in September of that year, he entered the Throop College of Technology (later the California Institute of Technology) to study chemical engineering. The school's annual tuition was $250, and Capra received occasional financial support from his family, who were resigned to the fact they had a scholar in their midst. Throop had a fine arts department, and Capra discovered poetry and the essays of Montaigne, which he fell in love with, while matriculating at the technical school. He then decided to write.

"It was a great discovery for me. I discovered language. I discovered poetry. I discovered poetry at Caltech, can you imagine that? That was a big turning point in my life. I didn't know anything could be so beautiful." Capra penned "The Butler's Failure," about an English butler provoked by poverty to murder his employer, then to suicide."

Capra was singled out for a cash award of $250 for having the highest grades in the school. Part of his prize was a six-week trip across the U.S. and Canada. When Capra's father, Turiddu, died in 1916, Capra started working at the campus laundry to make money.

After the U.S. Congress declared War on Germany on April 6, 1917, Capra enlisted in the Army, and while he was not a naturalized citizen yet, he was allowed to join the military as part of the Coastal Artillery. Capra became a supply officer for the student soldiers at Throop, who have been enrolled in a Reserve Officers Training Corps program. At his enlistment, Capra discovered he was not an American citizen; he became naturalized in 1920.

On September 15, 1918, Capra graduated from Throop with his bachelor's degree, and was inducted into the U.S. Army on October 18th and shipped out to the Presidio at San Francisco. An armistice ending the fighting of World War One would be declared in less than a month. While at the Presidio, Capra became ill with the Spanish influenza that claimed 20 million lives worldwide. He was discharged from the Army on December 13th and moved to his brother Ben's home in L.A. While recuperating, Capra answered a cattle call for extras for John Ford's film "The The Outcasts of Poker Flat (Capra, cast as a laborer in the Ford picture, introduced himself to the film's star, Harry Carey. Two decades later, Capra, designated the #1 director in Hollywood by "Time" magazine, would cast Carey and his movie actress wife Olive in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington for which Carey won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination).

While living at his mother's house, Capra took on a wide variety of manual laboring jobs, including errand boy and ditch digger, even working as an orange tree pruner at 20 cents a day. He continued to be employed as an extra at movie studios and as a prop buyer at an independent studio at Sunset Boulevard and Gower Street, which later became the home of Columbia Pictures, where Capra would make his reputation as the most successful movie director of the 1930s. Most of his time was spent unemployed and idle, which gave credence to his family's earlier opposition to him seeking higher education. Capra wrote short stories but was unable to get them published. He eventually got work as a live-in tutor for the son of "Lucky" Baldwin, a rich gambler. (He later used the Baldwin estate as a location for Dirigible).

Smitten by the movie bug, in August of that year, Capra, former actor W. M. Plank, and financial backer Ida May Heitmann incorporated the Tri-State Motion Picture Co. in Nevada. Tri-State produced three short films in Nevada in 1920, Don't Change Your Husband, The Pulse of Life, and The Scar of Love (1920), all directed by Plank, and possibly based on story treatments written by Capra. The films were failures, and Capra returned to Los Angeles when Tri-State broke up. In March 1920, Capra was employed by CBC Film Sales Co., the corporate precursor of Columbia Films, where he also worked as an editor and director on a series called "Screen Snapshots." He quit CBC in August and moved to San Francisco, but the only jobs he could find were that of bookseller and door-to-door salesman. Once again seeming to fulfill his family's prophecy, he turned to gambling, and also learned to ride the rails with a hobo named Frank Dwyer. There was also a rumor that he became a traveling salesman specializing in worthless securities, according to a "Time" magazine story "Columbia's Gem" (August 8, 1938 issue, V.32, No. 6).

Still based in San Francisco in 1921, producer Walter Montague hired Capra for $75 per week to help direct the short movie The Ballad of Fisher's Boarding House, which was based on a poem by Rudyard Kipling. Montague, a former actor, had the dubious idea that foggy San Francisco was destined to become the capital of movies, and that he could make a fortune making movies based on poems. Capra helped Montague produced the one-reeler, which was budgeted at $1,700 and subsequently sold to the Pathe Exchange for $3,500. Capra quit Montague when he demanded that the next movie be based upon one of his own poems.

Unable to find another professional filmmaking job, Capra hired himself out as a maker of shorts for the public-at-large while working as an assistant at Walter Ball's film lab. Finally, in October 1921, the Paul Gerson Picture Corp. hired him to help make its two-reel comedies, around the time that he began dating the actress Helen Edith Howe, who would become his first wife. Capra continued to work for both Ball and Gerson, primarily as a cutter. On November 25, 1923, Capra married Helen Howell, and the couple soon moved to Hollywood.

Hal Roach hired Capra as a gag-writer for the "Our Gang" series in January, 1924. After writing the gags for five "Our Gang" comedies in seven weeks, he asked Roach to make him a director. When Roach refused (he somewhat rightly felt he had found the right man in director Bob McGowan), Capra quit. Roach's arch rival Mack Sennett subsequently hired him as a writer, one of a six-man team that wrote for silent movie comedian Harry Langdon, the last major star of the rapidly disintegrating Mack Sennett Studios, and reigning briefly as fourth major silent comedian after Charles Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and Harold Lloyd. Capra began working with the Harry Langdon production unit as a gag writer, first credited on the short Plain Clothes.

As Harry Langdon became more popular, his production unit at Sennett had moved from two- to three-reelers before Langdon, determined to follow the example of Chaplin, Keaton, and Lloyd, went into features. After making his first feature-length comedy, His First Flame for Sennett, Langdon signed a three-year contract with Sol Lesser's First National Pictures to annually produce two feature-length comedies at a fixed fee per film. For a multitude of reasons Mack Sennett was never able to retain top talent. On September 15, 1925, Harry Langdon left Sennett in an egotistical rage, taking many of his key production personnel with him. Sennett promoted Capra to director but fired him after three days in his new position. In addition to the Langdon comedies, Capra had also written material for other Sennett films, eventually working on twenty-five movies.

After being sacked by Sennett, Capra was hired as a gag-writer by Harry Langdon, working on Langdon's first First National feature-length film, Tramp, Tramp, Tramp. The movie was directed by Harry Edwards who had directed all of Harry Langdon's films at Sennett. His first comedy for First National, Tramp, Tramp, Tramp did well at the box office, but it had ran over budget, which came out of Langdon's end. Harry Edwards was sacked, and for his next picture, The Strong Man, Langdon promoted Capra to director, boosting his salary to $750 per week. The movie was a hit, but trouble was brewing among members of the Harry Langdon company. Langdon was increasingly believing his own press.

His marriage with Helen began to unravel when it is discovered that she had a life-threatening ectopic pregnancy that had to be terminated. In order to cope with the tragedy, Capra became a work-a-holic while Helen turned to drink. The deterioration of his marriage was mirrored by the disintegration of his professional relationship with Harry Langdonduring the making of the new feature, Long Pants.

The movie, which was released in March 1927, proved to be Capra's last with Harry Langdon, as the comedian soon sacked Capra after its release. Capra later explained the principle of Langdon comedies to James Agee, "It is the principal of the brick: If there was a rule for writing Langdon material, it was this: his only ally was God. Harry Langdon might be saved by a brick falling on a cop, but it was verboten that he in any way motivated the bricks fall."

During the production of Long Pants, Capra had a falling out with Langdon. Screenwriter Arthur Ripley's dark sensibility did not mesh well with that of the more optimistic Capra, and Harry Langdon usually sided with Ripley. The picture fell behind schedule and went over budget, and since Langdon was paid a fixed fee for each film, this represented a financial loss to his own Harry Langdon Corp. Stung by the financial set-back, and desiring to further emulate the great Chaplin, Harry Langdon made a fateful decision: He fired Capra and decided to direct himself. (Langdon's next three movies for First National were dismal failures, the two surviving films being very dark and grim black comedies, one of which, The Chaser, touched on the subject of suicide. It was the late years of the Jazz Age, a time of unprecedented prosperity and boundless bonhomie, and the critics, and more critically, the ticket-buying public, rejected Harry. In 1928, First National did not pick up his contract. The Harry Langdon Corp. soon went bankrupt, and his career as the "fourth major silent comedian" was through, just as sound was coming in.)

In April of 1927, Capra and his wife Helen split up, and Capra went off to New York to direct For the Love of Mike for First National, his first picture with Claudette Colbert. The director and his star did not get along, and the film went over budget. Subsequently, First National refused to pay Capra, and he had to hitchhike back to Hollywood. The film proved to be Capra's only genuine flop.

By September 1927, he was back working as a writer for Mack Sennett, but in October, he was hired as a director by Columbia Pictures President and Production Chief Harry Cohn for $1,000. The event was momentous for both of them, for at Columbia Capra would soon become the #1 director in Hollywood in the 1930s, and the success of Capra's films would propel the Poverty Row studio into the major leagues. But at first, Cohn was displeased with him. When viewing the first three days of rushes of his first Columbia film, That Certain Thing, Cohn wanted to fire him as everything on the first day had been shot in long shot, on the second day in medium shot, and on the third day in close-ups.

"I did it that way for time," Capra later recalled. "It was so easy to be better than the other directors, because they were all dopes. They would shoot a long shot, then they would have to change the setup to shoot a medium shot, then they would take their close-ups. Then they would come back and start over again. You lose time, you see, moving the cameras and the big goddamn lights. I said, 'I'll get all the long shots on that first set first, then all the medium shots, and then the close-ups.' I wouldn't shoot the whole scene each way unless it was necessary. If I knew that part of it was going to play in long shot, I wouldn't shoot that part in close-up. But the trick was not to move nine times, just to move three times. This saved a day, maybe two days."

Cohn decided to stick with Capra (he was ultimately delighted at the picture and gave Capra a $1,500 bonus and upped his per-picture salary), and in 1928, Cohn raised his salary again, now to to $3,000 per picture after he made several successful pictures, including Submarine. The Younger Generation, the first of a series of films with higher budgets to be directed by Capra, would prove to be his first sound film, when scenes were reshot for dialogue. In the summer of that year, he was introduced to a young widow, Lucille Warner Reyburn (who became Capra's second wife Lou Capra). He also met a transplanted stage actress, Barbara Stanwyck, who had been recruited for the talkie but had been in three successive unsuccessful films and wanted to return to the New York stage. Harry Cohn wanted Stanwyck to appear in Capra's planned film, Ladies of Leisure, but the interview with Capra did not go well, and Capra refused to use her.

Stanwyck went home crying after being dismissed by Capra, and her husband, a furious Frank Fay, called Capra up. In his defense, Capra said that Stanwyck didn't seem to want the part. According to Capra's 1961 autobiography, "The Name Above the Title," Fay said, "Frank, she's young, and shy, and she's been kicked around out here. Let me show you a test she made at Warner's." After viewing her Warners' test for The Noose, Capra became enthusiastic and urged Cohn to sign her. In January of 1930, Capra began shooting Ladies of Leisure with Stanwyck in the lead. The movies the two made together in the early '30s established them both on their separate journeys towards becoming movieland legends. Though Capra would admit to falling in love with his leading lady, it was Lucille Warner Reyburn who became the second Mrs. Capra.

"You're wondering why I was at that party. That's my racket. I'm a party girl. Do you know what that is?"

Stanwyck played a working-class "party girl" hired as a model by the painter Jerry, who hails from a wealthy family. Capra had written the first draft of the movie before screenwriter Jo Swerling took over. Swerling thought the treatment was dreadful. According to Capra, Swerling told Harry Cohn, when he initially had approached about adapting the play "Ladies of the Evening" into Capra's next proposed film, "I don't like Hollywood, I don't like you, and I certainly don't like this putrid piece of gorgonzola somebody gave me to read. It stunk when Belasco produced it as Ladies of Leisure, and it will stink as Ladies of Leisure, even if your little tin Jesus does direct it. The script is inane, vacuous, pompous, unreal, unbelievable - - and incredibly dull."

Capra, who favored extensive rehearsals before shooting a scene, developed his mature directorial style while collaborating with Stanwyck, a trained stage actress whose performance steadily deteriorated after rehearsals or retakes. Stanwyck's first take in a scene usually was her best. Capra started blocking out scenes in advance, and carefully preparing his other actors so that they could react to Stanwyck in the first shot, whose acting often was unpredictable, so they wouldn't foul up the continuity. In response to this semi-improvisatory style, Capra's crew had to boost its level of craftsmanship to beyond normal Hollywood standards, which were forged in more static and prosaic work conditions. Thus, the professionalism of Capra's crews became better than those of other directors. Capra's philosophy for his crew was, "You guys are working for the actors, they're not working for you."

After "Ladies of Leisure," Capra was assigned to direct Platinum Blonde starring Jean Harlow. The script had been the product of a series of writers, including Jo Swerling (who was given credit for adaptation), but was polished by Capra and Robert Riskin (who was given screen credit for the dialogue). Along with Jo Swerling, Riskin would rank as one of Capra's most important collaborators, ultimately having a hand in 13 movies. (Riskin wrote nine screenplays for Capra, and Capra based four other films on Riskin's work.)

Riskin created a hard-boiled newspaperman, Stew Smith for the film, a character his widow, the actress Fay Wray, said came closest to Riskin of any character he wrote. A comic character, the wise-cracking reporter who wants to lampoon high society but finds himself hostage to the pretensions of the rich he had previously mocked is the debut of the prototypical "Capra" hero. The dilemma faced by Stew, akin to the immigrant's desire to assimilate but being rejected by established society, was repeated in Mr. Deeds Goes to Town and in Meet John Doe.

Capra, Stanwyck, Riskin and Jo Swerling all were together to create Capra's next picture, The Miracle Woman, a story about a shady evangelist. With John Meehan, Riskin wrote the play that the movie is based on, "Bless You, Sister," and there is a possibly apocryphal story that has Riskin at a story conference at which Capra relates the treatment for the proposed film. Capra, finished, asked Riskin for his input, and Riskin replied, "I wrote that play. My brother and I were stupid enough to produce it on Broadway. It cost us almost every cent we had. If you intend to make a picture of it, it only proves one thing: You're even more stupid than we were."

Jo Swerling adapted Riskin's play, which he and his brother Everett patterned after Sinclair Lewis' "Elmer Gantry." Like the Lewis novel, the play focuses on the relationship between a lady evangelist and a con man. The difference, though, is that the nature of the relationship is just implied in Riskin's play (and the Capra film). There is also the addition of the blind war-vet as the moral conscience of the story; he is the pivotal character, whereas in Lewis' tale, the con artist comes to have complete control over the evangelist after eventually seducing her. Like some other Capra films, The Miracle Woman is about the love between a romantic, idealizing man and a cynical, bitter woman. Riskin had based his character on lady evangelist Uldine Utley, while Stanwyck based her characterization on Aimee Semple McPherson.

Recognizing that he had something in his star director, Harry Cohn took full advantage of the lowly position his studio had in Hollywood. Both Warner Brothers and mighty MGM habitually lent Cohn their troublesome stars -- anyone rejecting scripts or demanding a pay raise was fodder for a loan out to Cohn's Poverty Row studio. Cohn himself was habitually loathe to sign long-term stars in the early 1930s (although he made rare exceptions to Peter Lorre and The Three Stooges) and was delighted to land the talents of any top flight star and invariably assigned them to Capra's pictures. Most began their tenure in purgatory with trepidation but left eagerly wanting to work with Capra again.

In 1932, Capra decided to make a motion picture that reflected the social conditions of the day. He and Riskin wrote the screenplay for American Madness, a melodrama that is an important precursor to later Capra films, not only with It's a Wonderful Life which shares the plot device of a bank run, but also in the depiction of the irrationality of a crowd mentality and the ability of the individual to make a difference. In the movie, an idealistic banker is excoriated by his conservative board of directors for making loans to small businesses on the basis of character rather than on sounder financial criteria. Since the Great Depression is on, and many people lack collateral, it would be impossible to productively lend money on any other criteria than character, the banker argues. When there is a run on the bank due to a scandal, it appears that the board of directors are rights the bank depositors make a run on the bank to take out their money before the bank fails. The fear of a bank failure ensures that the failure will become a reality as a crowd mentality takes over among the clientèle. The board of directors refuse to pledge their capital to stave off the collapse of the bank, but the banker makes a plea to the crowd, and just like George Bailey's depositors in It's a Wonderful Life, the bank is saved as the fears of the crowd are ameliorated and businessmen grateful to the banker pledge their capital to save the bank. The board of directors, impressed by the banker's character and his belief in the character of his individual clients (as opposed to the irrationality of the crowd), pledge their capital and the bank run is staved off and the bank is saved.

In his biography, "The Name Above the Picture," Capra wrote that before American Madness, he had only made "escapist" pictures with no basis in reality. He recounts how Poverty Row studios, lacking stars and production values, had to resort to "gimmick" movies to pull the crowds in, making films on au courant controversial subjects that were equivalent to "yellow journalism."

What was more important than the subject and its handling was the maturation of Capra's directorial style with the film. Capra had become convinced that the mass-experience of watching a motion picture with an audience had the psychological effect in individual audience members of slowing down the pace of a film. A film that during shooting and then when viewed on a movieola editing device and on a small screen in a screening room among a few professionals that had seemed normally paced became sluggish when projected on the big screen. While this could have been the result of the projection process blowing up the actors to such large proportions, Capra ultimately believed it was the effect of mass psychology affecting crowds since he also noticed this "slowing down" phenomenon at ball games and at political conventions. Since American Madness dealt with crowds, he feared that the effect would be magnified.

He decided to boost the pace of the film, during the shooting. He did away with characters' entrances and exits that were a common part of cinematic "grammar" in the early 1930s, a survival of the "photoplays" days. Instead, he "jumped" characters in and out of scenes, and jettisoned the dissolves that were also part of cinematic grammar that typically ended scenes and indicated changes in time or locale so as not to make cutting between scenes seem choppy to the audience. Dialogue was deliberately overlapped, a radical innovation in the early talkies, when actors were instructed to let the other actor finish his or her lines completely before taking up their cue and beginning their own lines, in order to facilitate the editing of the sound-track. What he felt was his greatest innovation was to boost the pacing of the acting in the film by a third by making a scene that would normally play in one minute take only 40 seconds.

When all these innovations were combined in his final cut, it made the movie seem normally paced on the big screen, though while shooting individual scenes, the pacing had seemed exaggerated. It also gave the film a sense of urgency that befitted the subject of a financial panic and a run on a bank. More importantly, it "kept audience attention riveted to the screen," as he said in his autobiography. Except for "mood pieces," Capra subsequently used these techniques in all his films, and he was amused by critics who commented on the "naturalness" of his direction.

Capra was close to completely establishing his themes and style. Justly accused of indulging in sentiment which some critics labeled "Capra-corn," Capra's next film, Lady for a Day was an adaptation of Damon Runyon's 1929 short story "Madame La Gimp" about a nearly destitute apple peddler whom the superstitious gambler Dave the Dude (portrayed by Warner Brothers star Warren William) sets up in high style so she and her daughter, who is visiting with her finance, will not be embarrassed. Dave the Dude believes his luck at gambling comes from his ritualistically buying an apple a day from Annie, who is distraught and considering suicide to avoid the shame of her daughter seeing her reduced to living on the street. The Dude and his criminal confederates put Annie up in a luxury apartment with a faux husband in order to establish Annie in the eyes of her daughter as a dignified and respectable woman, but in typical Runyon fashion, Annie becomes more than a fake as the masquerade continues.

Robert Riskin wrote the first four drafts of Lady for a Day, and of all the scripts he worked on for Capra, the film deviates less from the script than any other. After seeing the movie, Runyon sent a telegraph to Riskin praising him for his success at elaborating on the story and fleshing out the characters while maintain his basic story. Lady for a Day was the favorite Capra film of John Ford, the great filmmaker who once directed the unknown extra. The movie cost $300,000 and was the first of Capra's oeuvre to attract the attention of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, getting a Best Director nomination for Capra, plus nods for Riskin and Best Actress. The movie received Columbia's first Best Picture nomination, the studio never having attracted any attention from the Academy before Lady for a Day. (Capra's last film was the flop remake of Lady for a Day with Bette Davis and Glenn Ford, Pocketful of Miracles)

Capra reunited with Stanwyck and produced his first universally acknowledged classic, The Bitter Tea of General Yen, a film that now seems to belong more to the oeuvre of Josef von Sternberg than it does to Frank Capra. With "General Yen," Capra had consciously set out to make a movie that would win Academy Awards. Frustrated that the innovative, timely, and critically well-received American Madness had not received any recognition at the Oscars (particularly in the director's category in recognition of his innovations in pacing), he vented his displeasure to Columbia boss Cohn.

"Forget it," Cohn told Capra, as recounted in his autobiography. "You ain't got a Chinaman's chance. They only vote for that arty junk."

Capra set out to boost his chances by making an arty film featuring a "Chinaman" that confronted that major taboo of American cinema of the first half of the century, miscegenation.

In the movie, the American missionary Megan Davis is in China to marry another missionary. Abducted by the Chinese Warlord General Yen, she is torn away from the American compound that kept her isolated from the Chinese and finds herself in a strange, dangerous culture. The two fall in love despite their different races and life-views. The film ran up against the taboo against miscegenation embedded in the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association's Production Code, and while Megan merely kisses General Yen's hand in the picture, the fact that she was undeniably in love with a man from a different race attracted the vituperation of many bigots.

Having fallen for Megan, General Yen engenders her escape back to the Americans before willingly drinking a poisoned cup of tea, his involvement with her having cost him his army, his wealth, and now his desire to live. The Bitter Tea of General Yen marks the introduction of suicide as a Capra theme that will come back repeatedly, most especially in George Bailey's breakdown on the snowy bridge in It's a Wonderful Life.

Despair often shows itself in Capra films, and although in his post-"General Yen" work, the final reel wraps things up in a happy way, until that final reel, there is tragedy, cynicism, heartless exploitation, and other grim subject matter that Capra's audiences must have known were the truth of the world, but that were too grim to face when walking out of a movie theater. When pre-Code movies were rediscovered and showcased across the United States in the 1990s, they were often accompanied by thesis about how contemporary audiences "read" the films (and post-1934 more Puritanical works), as the movies were not so frank or racy as supposed. There was a great deal of signaling going on which the audience could read into, and the same must have been true for Capra's films, giving lie to the fact that he was a sentimentalist with a saccharine view of America. There are few films as bitter as those of Frank Capra before the final reel.

Despair was what befell Frank Capra, personally, on the night of March 16, 1934, which he attended as one of the Best Director nominees for Lady for a Day. Capra had caught Oscar fever, and in his own words, "In the interim between the nominations and the final voting...my mind was on those Oscars." When Oscar host Will Rogers opened the envelope for Best Director, he commented, "Well, well, well. What do you know. I've watched this young man for a long time. Saw him come up from the bottom, and I mean the bottom. It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. Come on up and get it, Frank!"

Capra got up to go get it, squeezing past tables and making his way to the open dance floor to accept his Oscar. "The spotlight searched around trying to find me. 'Over here!' I waved. Then it suddenly swept away from me -- and picked up a flustered man standing on the other side of the dance floor - Frank Lloyd!"

Frank Lloyd went up to the dais to accept HIS Oscar while a voice in back of Capra yelled, "Down in front!"

Capra's walk back to his table amidst shouts of "Sit down!" turned into the "Longest, saddest, most shattering walk in my life. I wished I could have crawled under the rug like a miserable worm. When I slumped in my chair I felt like one. All of my friends at the table were crying."

That night, after Lloyd's Cavalcade, beat Lady for a Day for Best Picture, Capra got drunk at his house and passed out. "Big 'stupido,'" Capra thought to himself, "running up to get an Oscar dying with excitement, only to crawl back dying with shame. Those crummy Academy voters; to hell with their lousy awards. If ever they did vote me one, I would never, never, NEVER show up to accept it."

Capra would win his first of three Best Director Oscars the next year, and would show up to accept it. More importantly, he would become the president of the Academy in 1935 and take it out of the labor relations field a time when labor strife and the formation of the talent guilds threatened to destroy it.

The International Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences had been the brainchild of Louis B. Mayer in 1927 (it dropped the "International" soon after its formation). In order to forestall unionization by the creative talent (directors, actors and screenwriters) who were not covered by the Basic Agreement signed in 1926, Mayer had the idea of forming a company union, which is how the Academy came into being. The nascent Screen Writers Union, which had been created in 1920 in Hollywood, had never succeeded in getting a contract from the studios. It went out of existence in 1927, when labor relations between writers and studios were handled by the Academy's writers' branch.

The Academy had brokered studio-mandated pay-cuts of 10% in 1927 and 1931, and massive layoffs in 1930 and 1931. With the inauguration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt on March 4, 1933, Roosevelt took no time in attempting to tackle the Great Depression. The day after his inauguration, he declared a National Bank Holiday, which hurt the movie industry as it was heavily dependent on bank loans. Louis B. Mayer, as president of the Association of Motion Picture Producers, Inc. (the co-equal arm of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association charged with handling labor relations) huddled with a group from the Academy (the organization he created and had long been criticized for dominating, in both labor relations and during the awards season) and announced a 50% across-the-board pay cut. In response, stagehands called a strike for March 13th, which shut down every studio in Hollywood.

After another caucus between Mayer and the Academy committee, a proposal for a pay-cut on a sliding-scale up to 50% for everyone making over $50 a week; which would only last for eight weeks, was inaugurated. Screen writers resigned en masse from the Academy and joined a reformed Screen Writers Guild, but most employees had little choice and went along with it. All the studios but Warner Bros. and Sam Goldwyn honored the pledge to restore full salaries after the eight weeks, and Warners production chief Darryl F. Zanuck resigned in protest over his studio's failure to honor its pledge. A time of bad feelings persisted, and much anger was directed towards the Academy in its role as company union.

The Academy, trying to position itself as an independent arbiter, hired the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse for the first time to inspect the books of the studios. The audit revealed that all the studios were solvent, but Harry Warner refused to budge and Academy President 'Conrad Nagel' resigned, although some said he was forced out after a vote of no-confidence after arguing Warner's case. The Academy announced that the studio bosses would never again try to impose a horizontal salary cut, but the usefulness of the Academy as a company union was over.

Under Roosevelt's New Deal, the self-regulation imposed by the National Industrial Relations Act (signed into law on June 16th) to bring business sectors back to economic health was predicated upon cartelization, in which the industry itself wrote its own regulatory code. With Hollywood, it meant the re-imposition of paternalistic labor relations that the Academy had been created to wallpaper over. The last nail in the company union's coffin was when it became public knowledge that the Academy appointed a committee to investigate the continued feasibility of the industry practice of giving actors and writers long-term contracts. High salaries to directors, actors, and screen writers was compensation to the creative people for producers refusing to ceded control over creative decision-making. Long-term contracts were the only stability in the Hollywood economic set-up up creative people,. Up to 20%-25% of net earnings of the movie industry went to bonuses to studio owners, production chiefs, and senior executives at the end of each year, and this created a good deal of resentment that fueled the militancy of the SWG and led to the formation of the Screen Actors Guild in July 1933 when they, too, felt that the Academy had sold them out.

The industry code instituted a cap on the salaries of actors, directors, and writers, but not of movie executives; mandated the licensing of agents by producers; and created a reserve clause similar to baseball where studios had renewal options with talent with expired contracts, who could only move to a new studio if the studio they had last been signed to did not pick up their option.

The SWG sent a telegram to FDR in October 1933 denouncing this policy, arguing that the executives had taken millions of dollars of bonuses while running their companies into receivership and bankruptcy. The SWG denounced the continued membership of executives who had led their studios into financial failure remaining on the corporate boards and in the management of the reorganized companies, and furthermore protested their use of the NIRA to write their corrupt and failed business practices into law at the expense of the workers.

There was a mass resignation of actors from the Academy in October 1933, with the actors switching their allegiance to SAG. SAG joined with the SWG to publish "The Screen Guilds Magazine," a periodical whose editorial content attacked the Academy as a company union in the producers' pocket. SAG President Eddie Cantor, a friend of Roosevelt who had bee invited to spend the Thanksgiving Day holiday with the president, informed him of the guild's grievances over the NIRA code. Roosevelt struck down many of the movie industry code's anti-labor provisions by executive order.

The labor battles between the guilds and the studios would continue until the late 1930s, and by the time Frank Capra was elected president of the Academy in 1935, the post was an unenviable one. The Screen Directors Guild was formed at King Vidor's house on January 15, 1936, and one of its first acts was to send a letter to its members urging them to boycott the Academy Awards ceremony, which was three days away. None of the guilds had been recognized as bargaining agents by the studios, and it was argued to grace the Academy Awards would give the Academy, a company union, recognition. Academy membership had declined to 40 from a high of 600, and Capra believed that the guilds wanted to punish the studios financially by depriving them of the good publicity the Oscars generated.

But the studios couldn't care less. Seeing that the Academy was worthless to help them in its attempts to enforce wage cuts, it too abandoned the Academy, which it had financed. Capra and the Board members had to pay for the Oscar statuettes for the 1936 ceremony. In order to counter the boycott threat, Capra needed a good publicity gimmick himself, and the Academy came up with one, voting D.W. Griffith an honorary Oscar, the first bestowed since one had been given to Charles Chaplin at the first Academy Awards ceremony.

The Guilds believed the boycott had worked as only 20 SAG members and 13 SWG members had showed up at the Oscars, but Capra remembered the night as a victory as all the winners had shown up. However, 'Variety' wrote that "there was not the galaxy of stars and celebs in the director and writer groups which distinguished awards banquets in recent years." "Variety" reported that to boost attendance, tickets had been given to secretaries and the like. Bette Davis and Victor McLaglen had showed up to accept their Oscars, but McLaglen's director and screenwriter, John Ford and Dudley Nichols, both winners like McLaglen for The Informer, were not there, and Nichols became the first person to refuse an Academy Award when he sent back his statuette to the Academy with a note saying he would not turn his back on his fellow writers in the SWG. Capra sent it back to him. Ford, the treasurer of the SDG, had not showed up to accept his Oscar, he explained, because he wasn't a member of the Academy. When Capra staged a ceremony where Ford accepted his award, the SDG voted him out of office.

To save the Academy and the Oscars, Capra convinced the board to get it out of the labor relations field. He also democratized the nomination process to eliminate studio politics, opened the cinematography and interior decoration awards to films made outside the U.S., and created two new acting awards for supporting performances to win over SAG.

By the 1937 awards ceremony, SAG signaled its pleasure that the Academy had mostly stayed out of labor relations by announcing it had no objection to its members attending the awards ceremony. The ceremony was a success, despite the fact that the Academy had to charge admission due to its poor finances. Frank Capra had saved the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and he even won his second Oscar that night, for directing Mr. Deeds Goes to Town. At the end of the evening, Capra announced the creation of the Irving Thalberg Memorial Award to honor "the most consistent high level of production achievement by an individual producer." It was an award he himself was not destined to win.

By the 1938 awards, the Academy and all three guilds had buried the hatchet, and the guild presidents all attended the ceremony: SWG President Dudley Nichols, who finally had accepted his Oscar, SAG President Robert Montgomery, and SDG President King Vidor. Capra also had introduced the secret ballot, the results of which were unknown to everyone but the press, who were informed just before the dinner so they could make their deadlines. The first Irving Thalberg Award was given to long-time Academy supporter and anti-Guild stalwart Darryl F. Zanuck by Cecil B. DeMille, who in his preparatory remarks, declared that the Academy was "now free of all labor struggles."

But those struggles weren't over. In 1939, Capra had been voted president of the SDG and began negotiating with AMPP President 'Joseph Schenck', the head of 20th Century-Fox, for the industry to recognize the SDG as the sole collective bargaining agent for directors. When Schenck refused, Capra mobilized the directors and threatened a strike. He also threatened to resign from the Academy and mount a boycott of the awards ceremony, which was to be held a week later. Schenck gave in, and Capra won another victory when he was named Best Director for a third time at the Academy Awards, and his movie, You Can't Take It With You, was voted Best Picture of 1938.

The 1940 awards ceremony was the last that Capra presided over, and he directed a documentary about them, which was sold to Warner Bros' for $30,000, the monies going to the Academy. He was nominated himself for Best Director and Best Picture for Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, but lost to the Gone with the Wind juggernaut. Under Capra's guidance, the Academy had left the labor relations field behind in order to concentrated on the awards (publicity for the industry), research and education.

"I believe the guilds should more or less conduct the operations and functions of this institution," he said in his farewell speech. He would be nominated for Best Director and Best Picture once more with It's a Wonderful Life in 1947, but the Academy would never again honor him, not even with an honorary award after all his service. (Bob Hope, in contrast, received four honorary awards, including a lifetime membership in 1945, and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian award in 1960 from the Academy.) The SDG (subsequently renamed the Directors Guild of America after its 1960 with the Radio and Television Directors Guild and which Capra served as its first president from 1960-61), the union he had struggled with in the mid-1930s but which he had first served as president from 1939 to 1941 and won it recognition, voted him a lifetime membership in 1941 and a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1959.

Whenever Capra convinced studio boss Harry Cohn to let him make movies with more controversial or ambitious themes, the movies typically lost money after under-performing at the box office. The Bitter Tea of General Yen and Lost Horizon were both expensive, philosophically minded pictures that sought to reposition Capra and Columbia into the prestige end of the movie market. After the former's relative failure at the box office and with critics, Capra turned to making a screwball comedy, a genre he excelled at, with It Happened One Night. Bookended with You Can't Take It With You, these two huge hits won Columbia Best Picture Oscars and Capra Best Director Academy Awards. These films, along with Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and It's a Wonderful Life are the heart of Capra's cinematic canon. They are all classics and products of superb craftsmanship, but they gave rise to the canard of "Capra-corn." One cannot consider Capra without taking into account The Bitter Tea of General Yen, American Madness, and Meet John Doe, all three dark films tackling major issues, Imperialism, the American plutocracy, and domestic fascism. Capra was no Pollyanna, and the man who was called a "dago" by Mack Sennett and who went on to become one of the most unique, highly honored and successful directors, whose depictions of America are considered Americana themselves, did not live his cinematic life looking through a rose-colored range-finder

In his autobiography "The Name Above the Title," Capra says that at the time of American Madness, critics began commenting on his "gee-whiz" style of filmmaking. The critics attacked "gee whiz" cultural artifacts as their fabricators "wander about wide-eyed and breathless, seeing everything as larger than life." Capra's response was "Gee whiz!"

Defining Hollywood as split between two camps, "Mr. Up-beat" and "Mr. Down-beat," Capra defended the up-beat gee whiz on the grounds that, "To some of us, all that meets the eye IS larger than life, including life itself. Who ca match the wonder of it?"

Among the artists of the "Gee-Whiz:" school were Ernest Hemingway, Homer, and Paul Gauguin, a novelist who lived a heroic life larger than life itself, a poet who limned the lives of gods and heroes, and a painter who created a mythic Tahiti, the Tahiti that he wanted to find. Capra pointed to Moses and the apostles as examples of men who were larger than life. Capra was proud to be "Mr. Up-beat" rather than belong to "the 'ashcan' school" whose "films depict life as an alley of cats clawing lids off garbage cans, and man as less noble than a hyena. The 'ash-canners,' in turn, call us Pollyannas, mawkish sentimentalists, and corny happy-enders."

What really moves Capra is that in America, there was room for both schools, that there was no government interference that kept him from making a film like American Madness. (While Ambassador to the Court of St. James, Joseph P. Kennedy had asked Harry Cohn to stop exporting Mr. Smith Goes to Washington to Europe as it portrayed American democracy so negatively.) About Mr. Up-beat and Mr-Downbeat and "Mr. In-between," Capra says, "We all respect and admire each other because the great majority freely express their own individual artistry unfettered by subsidies or strictures from government, pressure groups, or ideologists."

In the period 1934 to 1941, Capra the created the core of his canon with the classics It Happened One Night, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, You Can't Take It With You, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and Meet John Doe, wining three Best Director Oscars in the process. Some cine-historians call Capra the great American propagandist, he was so effective in creating an indelible impression of America in the 1930s. "Maybe there never was an America in the thirties," John Cassavetes was quoted as saying. "Maybe it was all Frank Capra."

After the United States went to war in December 1941, Frank Capra rejoined the Army and became an actual propagandist. His "Why We Fight" series of propaganda films were highly lauded for their remarkable craftsmanship and were the best of the U.S. propaganda output during the war. Capra's philosophy, which has been variously described as a kind of Christian socialism (his films frequently feature a male protagonist who can be seen a Christ figure in a story about redemption emphasizing New Testament values) that is best understood as an expression of humanism, made him an ideal propagandist. He loved his adopted country with the fervor of the immigrant who had realized the American dream. One of his propaganda films, The Negro Soldier, is a milestone in race relations.

Capra, a genius in the manipulation of the first form of "mass media," was opposed to "massism." The crowd in a Capra film is invariably wrong, and he comes down on the side of the individual, who can make a difference in a society of free individuals. In an interview, Capra said he was against "mass entertainment, mass production, mass education, mass everything. Especially mass man. I was fighting for, in a sense, the preservation of the liberty of the individual person against the mass."

Capra had left Columbia after "Mr. Smith" and formed his own production company. After the war, he founded Liberty Films with John Ford and made his last masterpiece, It's a Wonderful Life. Liberty folded prior to its release (another Liberty film, William Wyler's masterpiece, The Best Years of Our Lives was released through United Artists). Though Capra received his sixth Oscar nomination as best director, the movie flopped at the box office, which is hard to believe now that the film is considered must-see viewing each Christmas. Capra's period of greatness was over, and after making three under-whelming films from 1948 to '51 (including a remake of his earlier Broadway Bill), Capra didn't direct another picture for eight years, instead making a series of memorable semi-comic science documentaries for television that became required viewing for most 1960's school kids. His last two movies, A Hole in the Head and Pocketful of Miracles his remake of Lady for a Day did little to enhance his reputation.

But a great reputation it was, and is. Capra's films withstood the test of time and continue to be as beloved as when they were embraced by the movie-going "masses" in the 1930s. It was the craftsmanship: Capra was undeniably a master of his medium. The great English novelist Graham Greene, who supported himself as a film critic in the 1930s, loved Capra's films due to their sense of responsibility and of common life, and due to his connection with his audience. (Capra, according to the 1938 "Time" article, believed that what he liked would be liked by moviegoers). In his review of Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, Greene elucidated the central theme of Capra

James MacArthur

In a career spanning more than four decades, James MacArthur developed a body of work which is wonderfully dynamic in both scope and range. Portraying everything from crazed killer to stalwart defender of law and order, frustrated teenager to cynical senior supervisor, he has appeared in numerous films, television programs, and stage productions since his career officially began back in 1955. Although he had been performing in parts during summer stock productions since 1949, making his stage debut in "The Corn Is Green", his real acting career did not begin until he starred as the complex and misunderstood teenager in John Frankenheimer's "Deal a Blow". Broadcast live on the Climax! television anthology series, the program told the story of "Hal Ditmar", a relatively ordinary youngster on the verge of manhood who finds himself caught up in a snowballing world of trouble with his parents, the law, and virtually everyone in authority after a minor infraction of the rules at a movie theater. The story was so well-crafted and MacArthur's performance so compelling that a year later it was remade by Frankenheimer into his first theatrical release, The Young Stranger. The movie received much critical acclaim and earned its star a BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) Film Award nomination as Most Promising Newcomer (1958) and won a film festival in Switzerland. Next up was the Disney movie of Conrad Richter's novel, The Light in the Forest. Set in the late 18th century in the burgeoning United States, it told the tale of a young man who had been kidnapped by Indians as a baby and raised as the son of a chief. A respected and accepted member of the tribe, the boy, known as "True Son", is ripped away from the only life he has ever known and forced to return to his biological parents due to a treaty signed by people of whom he has no knowledge and who cannot possibly have any interest in his individual welfare. His subsequent struggles to find out exactly where he fits in and to gain the trust and sanction of his new community are told in a way which is as wrenching and relevant to today's society as it was then. The corollaries between this story and the custody battles which seem to occur with alarming frequency in our own time are strong and thought provoking. It seems the question regarding when in a child's life his biological parentage begins to be outweighed by the environment in which he is being raised is one which has yet to be answered. The depth with which MacArthur imbued the role makes his performance both truthful and unforgettable. Before its release in theaters, The Light in the Forest was preceded by three more appearances in live teleplays, including another outstanding performance in the Studio One in Hollywood production of "Tongues of Angels" as "Ben Adams", a young man with a devastating stuttering problem who pretends to be a deaf/mute in order to hide his infirmity. A string of meaty roles quickly followed, including the Disney classic films Kidnapped, Third Man on the Mountain and Swiss Family Robinson; television programs such as The Untouchables, Bus Stop and Wagon Train; and two more live teleplays. As sociopathic killer and racketeer "Johnny Lubin" in The Untouchables episode "Death for Sale", MacArthur for the first time portrayed an unsympathetic character. The heart-stopping realism of his performance provided definitive proof of his abilities as a multifaceted and talented actor. In what he described in one interview as his first "mature" role, he then appeared as a doctor-in-the-making in The Interns, turning in a fine performance as a somewhat naive young man who grows up rather quickly when presented with several tough choices and life-defining situations. After that came more television, the underrated yet stirring film, Cry of Battle, and Spencer's Mountain, the highly successful precursor to the popular television series The Waltons. Once again, in both films, MacArthur played young men whose lives are changed by circumstances beyond their control and who must dig deep within themselves to find the inner strength and fortitude to deal with those events. Having by now amassed an impressive list of film and television credits in addition to stage performances on Broadway and other venues, MacArthur then turned to the pivotal role of "Ensign Ralston" in the tense and nerve-wracking Cold War yarn, The Bedford Incident. His performance as the eager to-please and earnest young officer carried a subtlety and intensity hard to believe of someone not yet thirty years old. The role of "William Ashton" in the light-hearted romance, The Truth About Spring came next, almost immediately followed by yet another coming-of-age performance as "Lt. Weaver" in the blockbuster WWII saga, Battle of the Bulge. Westerns and war dramas predominated the next phase of MacArthur's career with appearances in television programs such as Branded, 12 O'Clock High, Gunsmoke, Combat!, Hondo, Bonanza, and Death Valley Days, in addition to the films Ride Beyond Vengeance, "Mosby's Marauders" (1966) and Hang 'Em High. It was his appearance in this last movie that would ultimately lead him into the role of "Dan Williams" on Hawaii Five-O. When Leonard Freeman found himself looking for a replacement to play the complex sidekick to Jack Lord's powerful "Steve McGarrett", he went looking for the young actor he remembered from just two or three days' work on his low-budget spaghetti Western. The juxtaposition of MacArthur's still-boyish good looks with his ability to bring a convincing toughness and sincerity to the role made him one of the best-remembered and well-admired actors of 1960s and 1970s popular television. Even today, more than twenty years after the program stopped production, it is broadcast in syndication in markets all over the world. Its "Book 'im, Danno" catchphrase is still as much a part of our popular culture as that famed line from another show of the same era: "Beam me up, Scotty". Departing "Five-O" prior to its 12th and final season, MacArthur's appearances became less frequent, yet still memorable. He was featured in such popular television shows as The Love Boat, Vega$, Fantasy Island, and Murder, She Wrote and starred in two made-for-television movies: Irwin Allen's The Night the Bridge Fell Down and Alcatraz: The Whole Shocking Story. His poignant portrayal of hapless "Walt Stomer" in the latter provided a fine example that his skills as an actor had not waned in the 25 years since that first television appearance. He concentrated on the stage for a while then, performing in productions such as "Arsenic and Old Lace", "A Bedfull of Foreigners" and "Love Letters", as well as the occasional live appearance at charity and celebrity sporting events. In 1998, after nearly a decade away from television screens, he took up the role of "Frank Del Rio" in the Family Channel movie Storm Chasers: Revenge of the Twister. With the new century, MacArthur returned to a more active professional schedule, continuing to make a number of personal appearances to sign autographs and greet fans, as well as several speaking engagements such as northeast Ohio's "One Book, Two Counties: An Evening With James MacArthur", The Cinema Audio Society Annual Awards Banquet and AdventureCon in Knoxville, Tennessee. In addition, he has been featured in several television specials and interview programs, including Emme & Friends, Entertainment Tonight, Inside TVLand, and Christopher Closeup. The increasing popularity of the DVD market has seen the re-release of Swiss Family Robinson with a new behind-the-scenes documentary narrated by MacArthur and a lengthy on-screen interview covering many aspects of his career. Planned for re-release in July 2003, the 1956 version of Anastasia is expected to include an on-screen interview with MacArthur discussing his mother, Helen Hayes, and her work in that movie. April 2003 marked his return to the stage as "Father Madison" in Joe Moore's original play Dirty Laundry. On 6 November 2003, the Hawaii International Film Festival chose James MacArthur and Hawaii Five-O as the recipient of their annual "Film in Hawaii" award, an honor both well-deserved and especially significant, coming as it did from the people and the State of Hawaii. Plans were being made to feature MacArthur in a new television series set in the Hawaiian Islands, though nothing more definitive had ever been arranged.

Keith Richards

Keith Richards is an internationally recognized iconic figure in contemporary culture and popular music as a singer, guitar player, songwriter, film actor, and public figure. He was voted 10th greatest guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone Magazine, and was elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989, as founding member of the legendary rock band The Rolling Stones. Together with his song-writing partner, Mick Jagger, he wrote and recorded hundreds of songs, including their monster hit 'Satisfaction', one of the defining songs of the era.

He was born on December 18, 1943, in Dartford, Kent, England, UK. His father, Bert Richards, a factory worker, was injured during the WWII. His mother, Doris (Dupree), introduced him to music of jazz, and also encouraged his singing performances with a choir in Westminster Abbey. Keith Richards met Mick Jagger when he attended primary school during the 1950s, albeit when they went into secondary schools they lost touch for a while. But one day in 1960 they accidentally met on a train and talked about starting up a band. Eventually, Richards and Jagger made their dream come true. They established one of the most legendary life-long songwriting partnerships, following the example of John Lennon and Paul McCartney's songwriting for The Beatles. Besides their main success in popular music and entertainment, Richards and Jagger had carried on their early image of unkempt and surly youth that many others would emulate, and spread their influence across traditional boundaries of genres and styles into filmmaking, art, fashion, and contemporary lifestyle, thus turning Jagger and Richards into cross-cultural trend-setters.

Since The Rolling Stones were formed in 1962, Richards and Jagger were continuously absorbing from many musical styles and assimilated various genres and artistic influences, ultimately creating their very own inimitable style. Together they undergone transformation from semi-amateur local musicians to the leading international superstars. Both Richards and Jagger became poster boys for excess, however, they had survived ups and downs in their careers and personal lives, and remained the core of the band. Initially they shared a flat with the late Brian Jones in London, in 1962. The first lineup of the Stones consisted of Mick Jagger on lead vocal and harmonica Keith Richards on guitar, Bill Wyman on bass, Charlie Watts on drums and Brian Jones on guitar. In 1964 they released their first album titled "The Rolling Stones." In 1965 Richards and Jagger wrote their single, "The Last Time," that became their first number 1 hit in the UK. Then came "Satisfaction" (1965), which was composed by Keith Richards in his sleep, and with the addition of provocative lyrics by Mick Jagger it became the greatest hit and their calling card on each and every show.

In 1966, after The Beatles stopped giving live performances, The Rolling Stones took over as the unofficial "biggest touring band in the world" for the next few years. During 1966-1969 they toured the world, and constantly updated their song-list with many great hits like "Lets Spend the night together" (1967), "Sympathy for the Devil" (1968) and "Honky tonk woman" (1969). The incredible international success of the Stones came with a sad side, caused by Brian's drug and alcohol abuse that impaired his speech and appearance, so the band-mates had to replace him. In July 1969, Brian Jones died of drowning in his swimming pool while having signs of drug overdose. Upon Richards's and Jagger's approval, guitarist Mick Taylor took Brian's place. Brian's death at age 27 made him one of the first members of the infamous "27 Club" of rock stars who died at that age. Although Brian's estrangement from his band-mates, and his numerous arrests were caused by his personal problems with drugs, both Richards and Jagger were blamed at the time for Brian's death. The loss of one of their founding members was a painful moment for the Stones. However, at the end of the 1960s their creativity reached the new highs. Their albums "Beggars Banquet" (1968) and "Sticky Fingers" (1971) were among the most popular albums they ever made, having such hits as "Wild Horses" and "Brown Sugar."

During the 1970s The Rolling Stones remained the biggest band in the world, albeit they were rivaled by the Led Zeppelin. The Stones made thousands of live performances and multi-million record sales with hits like "Angie" (1973), "It's Only Rock and Roll" (1974), "Hot Stuff" (1976) and "Respectable" (1978). At that time both Keith Richards and Mick Jagger had individual ambitions, and applied their untamed creativity in various projects outside the Stones. Keith released his own single. In 1974 Ron Wood had replaced Mick Taylor on guitar and Keith and Ron both played lead guitars. During the decade Keith Richards had a family crisis on his hands, and suffered through emotional pain and drug abuse, albeit it didn't stop him from being himself. In 1980 the group released "Emotional Rescue" which Keith Richards didn't care for, and the group didn't even tour to promote the album. In 1981 with the release of 'Tattoo You', the group went on a major world tour filling stadiums in the US and in Europe. In 1983 the Stones recorded the album "Undercover" at the Compass Point in Nassau and during this time Mick and Keith were having arguments over rights of the group. After having created tens of albums and over a hundred popular songs together, their legendary song-writing partnership was undergoing the most painful test: the bitter rivalry between two enormously talented and equally ambitious superstars.

Outside of The Rolling Stones, Richards toured with The New Barbarians, and also was the front-man of the X-Pensive Winos in the 1980s. In 1985 Keith Richards took part in the "Artists United Against Apartheid" charity project, and has been a participant in many more charitable concerts ever since. In 1992 he released his solo album titled 'Main Offender', which got him back on the road with a promotional tour. Also during the tour he continued singing a few Stones songs. But individual career and solo performances did not bring Richards as much satisfaction as he experienced together with his writing partner. Eventually, Jagger and Richards got together in Barbados and started to write new songs for the album "Steel Wheels." After the Stones recorded it they went back on the road. It was the first tour of The Rolling Stones in 7 years. But in 1992 Bill Wyman announced that he was going to leave the group. In 1993 Keith Richards and his band released an album and toured for a few months. However, his artistic and personal connection with the Stones had eventually prevailed, and Richards reunited with his former band-mates.

In 1994 The Rolling Stones got back together again and recorded the album "Voodoo Lounge" and toured the world extensively. In 1995 an album of their warm up gig in a pub in Denmark was released. It was an acoustic live album called "Stripped". In 1997 they released the album "Bridges to Babylon" and started a new tour promoting the album. In 1998 a live album "No Security" was released. Their 1999 the tour ended and the group hasn't performed together until 2002. At that time Keith Richards continued playing guitar for various projects and artists, such as Norah Jones, and Aretha Franklin among others. Richards has been good friends with Johnny Depp, who modeled the character of Capt. Jack Sparrow after him, including his voice, his mannerisms, his personality, and aspects of his appearance. In return, Johnny Depp invited Keith Richards to play his father, Captain Teague, in the third installment of the "Pirates" franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End.

The Rolling Stones have released 55 albums of original work and compilations, and sold over 200 million records word-wide during their career spanning over 45 years. "The Stones" played in all kinds of spaces from small clubs to big stadium arenas, they remained one of the biggest entertainment acts touring the world with a retinue of jet-set hangers-on. Their inimitable shows, no matter the best, or the worst, has been played with fire and emotion, giving their audiences the kind of music they do best - it's only rock'n roll. In 2007 they even rocked the Tsar's Winter Palace with fifty thousand fans in St. Petersburg, Russia, where the communist revolution took place. They gave more large-scale shows internationally than any other existing band in the world, culminating in their 2005-2007 "A Bigger Band" tour with 147 concerts, the highest grossing tour of all time with $559 million earned. At their shows, even if you don't shake your hips like Mick Jagger, just hold on to your hat as tears go by, and they can start you up and get you rocking. You can make it if you try.

Since 1962, during the career spanning over 45 years, Keith Richards has been the lead guitarist and primary musical force behind The Rolling Stones, as well as songwriter for the band. He also continues making numerous guest performances as guitarist, as well as actor and producer active in various other projects. Besides his favorite Telecaster and Gibson guitars, Keith Richards owns a valuable collection of about one thousand vintage guitars of various brands, many of which he takes along on concert tours and studio gigs.

Since Richards wrote the signature "Satisfaction" guitar riff, that was called by Newsweek "five notes that took the world," his influence on popular music had never stopped. In his own words, Keith Richards has been dedicated to "grow this music up" beyond the theatrics of the rock's past and "keep it fresh."

Chin Han

Named one of Asia's 25 greatest actors of all time by CNNGo (a division of CNN) alongside stars like Hong Kong's Tony Leung Chiu Wai, India's Amitabh Bachchan and Japan's Toshiro Mifune, Chin Han's 20 year career in Asia has spanned theater, television and film.

Beginning as a teen actor in stage classics like Moliere's L'Ecole des femmes and Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, he went on to star in Singapore's first English language television series Masters of the Sea produced by ex-Lorimar exec Joanne Brough (Dallas, Falcon Crest). A spin-off series Troubled Waters was to follow, which he also starred in.

In 1998 Chin Han made his US film debut in Blindness an Official Selection at the 2nd Hollywood Film Festival in a leading role opposite Vivian Wu (Peter Greenaway's The Pillow Book).

Soon after, he starred in the Singapore mini-series 'Alter Asians' which won the 2001 Asian Television Award for Best TV Movie of the Year.

As a director, he has helmed acclaimed Asian Premieres of plays like David Hare's The Blue Room and co-produced the official Musical adaptation of Ang Lee's The Wedding Banquet.

A pianist himself, Chin Han has also produced concerts for Tony Award winners Jason Robert Brown (The Last 5 Years), Cady Huffman (The Producers) and Lillias White (Disney's Hercules) in Asia.

In Los Angeles, he served as Associate Producer (credited as Chin Han Ng) on the 2006 Asian Excellence Awards which featured stars like Jackie Chan, Maggie Q, Quentin Tarantino and Danny Devito.

Returning to the big screen, his strong supporting performance in Thom Fitzgerald's (The Hanging Garden) 3 Needles with Lucy Liu, Sandra Oh, and Chloe Sevigny led one movie reviewer to note that for his 'small but important role, (Chin Han) delivers in spades' (I-S Magazine).

In 2008, Chin Han took on the pivotal role of Lau in the summer blockbuster movie The Dark Knight and was described by director Christopher Nolan as having 'a great presence... it was exactly what the character required' (South China Morning Post).

The following year, he joined John Cusack, Chiwetel Ejiofor and Woody Harrelson in Roland Emmerich's epic disaster movie 2012 which has grossed more than $750 million worldwide to date.

Chin Han then worked with Oscar-nominated director Gus Van Sant on the film Restless, produced by Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, which was selected as the 64th Cannes Film Festival's Un Certain Regard Opening Gala Film. The film also stars Mia Wasikowska and Henry Hopper.

More recently, he can be seen as part of the star-studded ensemble in Steven Soderbergh's biohazard thriller Contagion from Warner Bros. The film also stars Matt Damon, Kate Winslet, Marion Cottilard, Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow.

On US prime time television, Chin Han has guest-starred on J.J. Abrams Fringe and has had recurring roles on the critically acclaimed television series from Shawn Ryan, Last Resort (ABC) and the CW's hit show Arrow. In 2013, he completed The Sixth Gun based on the popular graphic novel as a pilot for NBC Universal and played Wu Jing in NBC's breakout show The Blacklist with James Spader.

In Asia, Chin Han next stars opposite Michelle Yeoh in Final Recipe, an intergenerational comedy about celebrity chefs, produced by CJ Entertainment, South Korea's largest entertainment company, and also heads up an international cast for HBO Asia's groundbreaking series Serangoon Road.

Crossing over from DC to the Marvel Universe, Han cameos as Councilman Yen in the 2014 hit movie Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

He is currently filming the highly-anticipated Netflix series Marco Polo for The Weinstein Company premiering this December.

Chin Han resides in Los Angeles.

Marieh Delfino

Marieh Delfino's career is a study in variations. From her first starring role in the cult Saturday morning hit, "All About Us" (2001)_, to her intense performance in the blockbuster, _Jeepers Creepers II (2003)_ qv). Gracing National Lampoon's _Dorm Dayz 2 (2006) (V)_ as the sexy and comedic genius "Gerri Farber", while simultaneously appearing as Shawn Reaves ("Bob Crane Junior")'s shy girlfriend, in the critically-acclaimed Auto Focus, starring 'William Defoe' and Greg Kinnear, Marieh Delfino constantly keeps us guessing. Her extraordinary upbringing could be the catalyst of her chameleonic ability to effortlessly and elegantly take on such a variety of roles. Marieh has always excelled in the arts, studying classical piano and modern dance since the age of 8, but mostly concentrating on intensive theater. However, contrary to the typical art kid cliché, Marieh strived in athletics and managed to make the honor roll every year at her academically cut-throat high school in Miami, Florida. So scholastically accomplished was she, that she was chosen out of thousands of high school kids as the one student representing her state as its "National Young Leader". Crowned a merit scholar, she was chosen to visit Congress in Washington D.C. to attend banquets and debates, essentially acting as a politician for a week. There, she met with congressmen and women as well as President Bill Clinton, where they engaged daily in educational discussions on various "current events".

Adding to her previous acting achievements, Marieh starred in David E. Kelley's Boston Public, as the tough Queens-bred hard-ass turned straight-A student, "Denise DeMarcos". Her character was faced with the decision to get an abortion at the ripe young age of 17, making her particular story-arch a very compelling and haunting subject matter. Such a heart-wrenching topic was only made indisputable by the mesmerizing and frail evoking performance Marieh single-handedly delivered. Her uncanny and limitless ability to jump into characters has allowed Marieh to soar above preconceived notions, thus making her truly believable as an All-American girl-next-door as well as a troubled teen of any ethnic background. That, in itself, is a very rare trait seldom found in one person. Marieh will be seen in the starring role in Zerophilia, a lighthearted comedy about a boy coming-of-age where, upon entering his sexual prime, he finds that he has turned into a woman. Simultaneously, she will also be seen as a trashy Cuban teenager, alongside sister Majandra Delfino, in the much anticipated Wim Wenders vehicle, Don't Come Knocking, starring Sam Shepard, Tim Roth and Jessica Lange. Here, Marieh showcases her knack for dialects as well as her repeating chameleonic resolve.

Luise Rainer

Luise Rainer, the first thespian to win back-to-back Oscars, was born on January 12, 1910 in Dusseldorf, Germany, into a prosperous Jewish family. Her parents were Emilie (Königsberger) and Heinrich Rainer, a businessman. She took to the stage, and plied her craft on the boards in Germany. As a young actress, she was discovered by the legendary theater director Max Reinhardt and became part of his company in Vienna, Austria. "I was supposed to be very gifted, and he heard about me. He wanted me to be part of his theater," Rainer recounted in a 1997 interview. She joined Reinhardt's theatrical company in Vienna and spent years developing as an actress under his tutelage. As part of Reinhardt's company, Rainer became a popular stage actress in Berlin and Vienna in the early 1930s. Rainer was a natural talent for Reinhardt's type of staging, which required an impressionistic acting style.

Rainer, who made her screen debut as a teenager and appeared in three other German-language films in the early '30s, terminated her European career when the Austrian Adolf Hitler consolidated his power in Germany. With his vicious anti-Semitism bringing about the Draconian Nuremberg Laws severely curtailing the rights of Germany's Jews, and efforts to expand that regime into the Sudetenland and Austria, Hitler and his Nazi government was proving a looming threat to European Jewry. Rainer had been spotted by a talent scout, who offered her a seven-year contract with the American studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The 25-year-old Rainer took the deal and emigrated to the United States.

She made her American debut in the movie Escapade, replacing Myrna Loy, who was originally slated for the part. It was her luck to have William Powell as her co-star in her first Hollywood film, as he mentored her, teaching her how to act in front of the camera. Powell, whom Rainer remembers as "a dear man" and "a very fine person," lobbied M.G.M. boss Louis B. Mayer, reportedly telling him, "You've got to star this girl or I'll look like an idiot.'"

During the making of "Escapade," Rainer met, and fell in love with, the left-wing playwright Clifford Odets, then at the height of his fame. They were married in 1937. It was not a happy union. M.G.M. cast Rainer in support of Powell in the title role of the The Great Ziegfeld, its spectacular bio-epic featuring musical numbers that recreated his "Follies" shows on Broadway. As Anna Held, Ziegfeld's common-law wife, Rainer excelled in the musical numbers, but it is for her telephone scene that she is most remembered for. "The Great Ziegfeld" was a big hit and went on to win the Academy Award as Best Picture of 1936. Rainer received her first of two successive Best Actress Oscars for playing Held. The award was highly controversial at the time as she was a relative unknown and it was only her first nomination, but also because her role was so short and relatively minor that it better qualified for a supporting nomination. (While 1936 was the first year that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences honored supporting players, her studio, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, listed her as a lead player, then got out its block vote for her.) Compounding the controversy was the fact that Rainer beat out such better known and more respected actresses as Carole Lombard (her sole Oscar nomination) in My Man Godfrey, previous Best Actress winner Norma Shearer (her fifth nomination) in Romeo and Juliet, and Irene Dunne (her second of five unsuccessful nominations) in Theodora Goes Wild. Some of the bitchery was directed toward Louis B. Mayer, whom non-M.G.M. Academy members resented for his ability to manipulate Academy votes. Other critics of her first Oscar win claimed it was the result of voters being unduly impressed with the great budget ($2 million) of "The Great Ziegfeld" rather than great acting. Most observers agree that Rainer won her Oscar as the result of her moving and poignant performance in just one single scene in the picture, the famous telephone scene in which the broken-hearted Held congratulates Ziegfeld over the telephone on his upcoming marriage to Billie Burke while trying to retain her composure and her dignity. During the scene, the camera is entirely focused on Rainer, and she delivers a tour-de-force performance. Seventy years later, it remains one of the most famous scenes in movie history. With another actress playing Held, the scene could have been mawkish, but Rainer brought the pathos of the scene out and onto film. She based her interpretation of the scene on Jean Cocteau's play "La Voix Humaine." "Cocteau's play is just a telephone conversation about a woman who has lost her beloved to another woman," Rainer remembered. "That is the comparison. As it fit into the Ziegfeld story, that's how I wrote it. It's a daily happening, not just in Cocteau." In an interview held 60 years after the film's release, Rainer was dismissive of the performance. "I was never proud of anything," she said. "I just did it like everything else. To do a film - let me explain to you - it's like having a baby. You labor, you labor, you labor, and then you have it. And then it grows up and it grows away from you. But to be proud of giving birth to a baby? Proud? No, every cow can do that."

Rainer would allay any back-biting from Hollywood's bovines over her first Oscar with her performance as O-Lan in M.G.M. producer Irving Thalberg's spectacular adaptation of Pearl S. Buck's "The Good Earth, the former Boy Wonder's final picture before his untimely death. The role won Rainer her second Best Actress Award. The success of The Good Earth was rooted in its realism, and its realism was enhanced by Rainer's acting opposite the legendary Paul Muni as her husband. When Thalberg cast Muni in the role of Wang Lung, he had to abandon any thought of casting the Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong as O-Lan as the Hays Office would not allow the hint of miscegenation, even between an actual Chinese woman and a Caucuasian actor in yellow-face drag. So, Thalberg gave Rainer the part, and she made O-Lan her own. She refused to wear a heavy makeup, and her elfin look helped her to assay a Chinese woman with results far superior to those of Myrna Loy in her Oriental vamp phase or Katharine Hepburn in Dragon Seed. In the late '90s, Rainer praised her director, Sidney Franklin, as "wonderful," and explained that she used an acting technique similar to "The Method" being pioneered by her husband's Group Theatre comrades back in New York. "I worked from inside out," she said. "It's not for me, putting on a face, or putting on makeup, or making masquerade. It has to come from inside out. I knew what I wanted to do and he let me do it." The win made Rainer the first two-time Oscar winner in an acting category and the first to win consecutive acting awards (Spencer Tracy, her distaff honoree for Captains Courageous would follow her as a consecutive acting Oscar winner the next year, and Walter Brennan, Best Supporting Actor Oscar winner for Come and Get It the year Rainer won her first, would tie them both in 1937 with his win for Kentucky and trump them with his third win for The Westerner, a record subsequently tied by Ingrid Bergman, Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep, Daniel Day-Lewis and surpassed by Katharine Hepburn.)

Rainer's career soon went into free-fall and collapsed, as she became the first notable victim of the "Oscar curse," the phenomenon that has seem many a performer's career take a nose-dive after winning an Academy Award. "For my second and third pictures I won Academy Awards. Nothing worse could have happened to me," Rainer said. A non-conformist, Rainer rejected Hollywood's values of Hollywood. In the late 1990s, she said, "I came from Europe where I was with a wonderful theater group, and I worked. The only thing on my mind was to do good work. I didn't know what an Academy Award was." M.G.M. boss Mayer, the founding force behind the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, had to force her to attend the Awards banquet to receive her Oscar. She rebelled against the studio due to the movies that M.G.M. forced her into after "The Good Earth."

In one case, director Dorothy Arzner had been assigned by M.G.M. producer Joseph M. Mankiewicz (whose wife, Rose Stradner had been Rainer's understudy in the Vienna State Theater) in 1937 to direct Rainer in "The Girl from Trieste," an unproduced Ferenc Molnár play about a prostitute trying to go reform herself who discovers the hypocrisies of the respectable class which she aspires to. After Thalberg's death in 1936, Mayer's lighter aesthetic began to rule the roost at M.G.M. Mayer. Mayer genuinely believed in the goodness of women and motherhood, and put women on a pedestal, and once told screenwriter Frances Marion that he never wanted to see anything produced by M.G.M. that would embarrass his wife and two daughters.

Without the more sophisticated Thalberg at the studio to run interference, Molnar's play was rewritten so that it was no longer about a prostitute, but a slightly bitter Cinderella story with a happy ending. Retitled by Mankiewicz as The Bride Wore Red, Rainer withdrew and was replaced by Joan Crawford. In a 1976 interview in "The New York Times," Arzner claimed that Rainer "had been suspended for marrying a Communist" (Clifford Odets). This is unlikely as M.G.M., like all Hollywood studios, had known or suspected communists on its payroll, most of whose affiliations were known by M.G.M. vice president E.J. Mannix. (Mannix, one of whose functions was responsibility for security at the studio, once said it would have been impossible to fire them all as "the communists" were the studio's best writers!) The studio never took action against alleged communists until an industry-wide agreement to do so was sealed at the Waldorf Conference of 1947, which was held in reaction to the House of Un-American Activities Committee launching a Hollywood witch hunt.

It was more likely that Rainer, fussy over her projects and wanting to use her Academy Award prominence to ensure herself better roles, withdrew on her own due to her lack of enthusiasm for the re-formulated product. In the late 1990s, Rainer recalled the satisfaction of being a European stage actress. "One day we were on a big tour," she told an interviewer in the late 1990s. "We did a play by Pirandello, and Reinhardt was in the theater. I shall never forget, it was the greatest compliment I ever got, better than any Academy Award. He came to me, looked at me and said - we were never called by first names - 'Rainer, how did you do this? ' It was so wonderful. 'How did you create this?' I was so startled and happy. That was my Academy Award." Rainer still is dismissive of the Academy Awards. "I can't watch the Oscars," she said recently. "Everybody thanking their mother, their father, their grandparents, their nurse - it's a crazy, horrible." She blames the studio and Mayer for the rapid decline in her career. "What they did with me upset me very much," she said in a 1997 interview. "I was dreaming naturally like anyone to do something very good, but after I got the two Academy Awards the studio thought, it doesn't matter what she gets. They threw all kinds of stuff on me, and I thought, no, I didn't want to be an actress."

Mayer pulled his famous emotional routines when Rainer, whom he wanted to turn into a glamorous star, would demand meatier roles. "He would cry phony tears," she recalled. Mayer had opposed her being cast as O-Lan in "The Good Earth," but Thalberg, who had a connection with M.G.M. capo di tutti capi Nicholas Schenck, the president of M.G.M. corporate parent Loew's, Inc., appealed to Schenck, who overrode Mayer's veto. (Mayer, who was involved in a power struggle with Thalberg before the latter's death, had opposed his filming Pearl Buck's novel. Mayer's reasoning was that American audiences wouldn't patronize movies about American farmers, so what made anyone think they'd flock to see a film about Chinese farmers, especially one with such a big budget, estimated at $2.8 million. (Upon release, the film barely broke even.) Thalberg died during the filming of "The Good Earth" (the only film of his released by M.G.M. whose title credits bore his name, in the form of a posthumous tribute).

Rainer felt lost without her protector. She recalled that Mayer "didn't know what to do with me, and that made me so unhappy. I was on the stage with great artists, and everything was so wonderful. I was in a repertory theater, and every night I played something else." Rainer asked to play Nora in a film of Ibsen's "A Doll's House," or portray Madame Curie, but instead, Mayer - now in complete control of the studio - had her cast in The Toy Wife, a movie she actually wound up liking, as she was charmed by her co-star, the urbane, intellectually and politically enlightened Melvyn Douglas. She recalls Douglas, ultimately a double-Oscar winner like herself, as her favorite leading man. "He was intelligent, and he was interested also in other things than acting."

Her problems with the culture of Hollywood, or the lack thereof, were worsening. The lack of intellectual conversation or concern with ideas by the denizens of the movie colony she was forced to work with was depressing. Hollywood was an unsophisticated place where materialism, such as the stars' preoccupation with clothes, was paramount. As she tells it, "Soon after I was there in Hollywood, for some reason I was at a luncheon with Robert Taylor sitting next to me, and I asked him, 'Now, what are your ideas or what do you want to do,' and his answer was that he wanted to have 10 good suits to wear, elegant suits of all kinds, that was his idea. I practically fell under the table."

M.G.M. teamed her with fellow Oscar-winner Tracy in Big City, a movie about conflict between rival taxi drivers. The memory of the movie disgusted her. "Supposedly it wasn't a bad film. But I thought it was a bad film!" She was also cast in The Emperor's Candlesticks, re-teaming her with "Ziegfeld" co-star William Powell, a movie she didn't like, as she couldn't understand its story. A detective tale, the script thoroughly confused Rainer, who was expected to soldier on like a good employee. Instead, she resisted.

After appearing in The Great Waltz and Dramatic School, her career was virtually over by 1938. She never made another film for M.G.M. "I just had to get away," she said about Hollywood. "I couldn't bear this total concentration and interviews on oneself, oneself, oneself. I wanted to learn, and to live, to go all over the world, to learn by seeing things and experiencing things, and Hollywood seemed very narrow." When World War II broke out in Europe, Rainer was joined by her family, as her German-born father was also an American citizen, allowing them all to escape Hitler and the Holocaust. Even before the outbreak of war, Rainer had been very worried about the state of affairs of the world, and she could not abide the escapist trifles that M.G.M. wanted to cast her in. When she protested, Mayer told Rainer that if she defied him, he would blackball her in Hollywood.

Disturbed by Hollywood's apathy over fascism in Europe and Asia, and by labor unrest and poverty in the U.S., she decided to walk out on her contract. She and Odets returned to New York. They were divorced in 1940. "Hollywood was a very strange place," she remembered. "To me, it was like a huge hotel with a huge door, one of those rotunda doors. On one side people went in, heads high, and very soon they came out on the other side, heads hanging." Her frustration with Hollywood was so complete, she abandoned movie acting in the early 1940s, after making the World War II drama Hostages for Paramount.

She made her Broadway debut in the play "A Kiss for Cinderella," which was staged by Lee Strasberg, which opened at the Music Box Theatre on March 10, 1942 and closed April 18th after 48 performances. Rainer then worked for the war effort during World War II, appearing at war bond rallies. She went on a tour of North Africa and Italy for the Army Special Service, socializing with soldiers to build their morale, and supplying them with books. The experience changed her life, allowing her to get over the shyness she'd had all her life. It also broadened her experience, forcing her to deal with the obvious fact that there were more important things than movie acting, which had proven unfulfilling to her.

Fortunately, Rainer found happiness in a long-lived marriage with the publisher Robert Knittel, a wealthy man whom she married in 1945. The couple had a daughter and made their home mostly in Switzerland and England as Rainer essentially left acting behind, although she did do some television in the 1940s, '50s, and '60s. Her retirement from the movies lasted for 53 years, until her brief comeback in The Gambler, a movie based on Fyodor Dostoevsky's eponymous story. In the film, Rainer played the role of the matriarch of an aristocratic Russian family in the 1860s who are in hock due the family members' obsession with gambling.

Rainer now lives in a luxurious flat in Eaton Square in London's Belgravia district, in a building where Vivien Leigh once lived. Blessed with a good memory, she claims she cannot remember the 1937 Academy Awards ceremony, when she won her first Oscar. She says the glamor of the event was out of sync with her life at the time, which was one of great sadness. "I married Clifford Odets. The marriage was for both of us a failure. He wanted me to be his little wife and a great actress at the same time. Somehow I could not live up to all of that."

She has had intriguing offers during her long retirement. Federico Fellini had wanted Rainer for a role in La Dolce Vita, but though she admired the director, she didn't like the script and turned it down. Rainer occasionally plied her craft as an actress on the stage. She made one more stab at Broadway, appearing in a 1950 production of Ibsen's "The Lady from the Sea," which was staged by Sam Wanamaker and Terese Hayden and co-starred Steven Hill, one of the founding members of Lee Strasberg's Actor's Studio. The play was a flop, running just 16 performances. "I was living in America and was on the stage there - sporadically. I always lived more than I worked. Which doesn't mean that I do not love my profession and every moment I was in it gave me great satisfaction and happiness."

Rainer has no regrets over not becoming the star she might have been. She outlived all of the legendary stars of her era, which likely is the best revenge for the loss of her career after bidding adieu to a company town she could not abide.

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones are the legendary British rock band known for many popular hits, such as Paint it Black, Lady Jane, Ruby Tuesday, and (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction. Almost everyone who attended their shows is quick to comment on their ability to start you up and shake your hips. Their song "Satisfaction" (1965) was composed by Keith Richards in his sleep, and with the addition of provocative lyrics by Mick Jagger it became the greatest hit and their calling card on each and every show.

In 1966, after The Beatles stopped giving live performances, The Rolling Stones took over as the unofficial "biggest touring band in the world" for the next few years. During 1966-1969 they toured the world, and constantly updated their song-list with many great hits like "Lets Spend the night together" (1967), "Sympathy for the Devil" (1968) and "Honky tonk woman" (1969). The incredible international success of the Stones came with a sad side, caused by Brian's drug and alcohol abuse that impaired his speech and appearance, so the band-mates had to replace him. In July 1969, Brian Jones died of drowning in his swimming pool while having signs of drug overdose. Upon Richards's and Jagger's approval, guitarist Mick Taylor took Brian's place. Brian's death at age 27 made him one of the first members of the infamous "27 Club" of rock stars who died at that age. Although Brian's estrangement from his band-mates, and his numerous arrests were caused by his personal problems with drugs, both Richards and Jagger were blamed at the time for Brian's death. The loss of one of their founding members was a painful moment for the Stones. However, at the end of the 1960s their creativity reached the new highs. Their albums "Beggars Banquet" (1968) and "Sticky Fingers" (1971) were among the most popular albums they ever made, having such hits as "Wild Horses" and "Brown Sugar."

During the 1970s The Rolling Stones remained the biggest band in the world, albeit they were rivaled by the Led Zeppelin. The Stones made thousands of live performances and multi-million record sales with hits like "Angie" (1973), "It's Only Rock and Roll" (1974), "Hot Stuff" (1976) and "Respectable" (1978). At that time both Keith Richards and Mick Jagger had individual ambitions, and applied their untamed creativity in various projects outside the Stones. Keith released his own single. In 1974 Ron Wood had replaced Mick Taylor on guitar and Keith and Ron both played lead guitars. During the decade Keith Richards had a family crisis on his hands, and suffered through emotional pain and drug abuse, albeit it didn't stop him from being himself. In 1980 the group released "Emotional Rescue" which Keith Richards didn't care for, and the group didn't even tour to promote the album. In 1981 with the release of 'Tattoo You', the group went on a major world tour filling stadiums in the US and in Europe. In 1983 the Stones recorded the album "Undercover" at the Compass Point in Nassau and during this time Mick and Keith were having arguments over rights of the group. After having created tens of albums and over a hundred popular songs together, their legendary song-writing partnership was undergoing the most painful test: the bitter rivalry between two enormously talented and equally ambitious superstars.

Mick Jagger is the heart of "The Stones" and Keith Richards - the soul. The two had carried on their early image of unkempt youth, had survived ups and downs in their careers and personal lives, and remained the core of the band since they shared a flat with the late Brian Jones in London in 1962. Two other remaining members are drummer Charlie Watts and guitarist Ron Wood. "The Stones" were part of the "British Invasion" in international culture during the 1960s, and has been extremely popular and famous for their 60s craze, hot stuff and sex drive. Since the 1970s they remained one of the biggest entertainment acts touring the world with a retinue of jet-set hangers-on. Their inimitable shows, no matter the best, or the worst, has been played with fire and emotion, giving their audiences the kind of music they do best - it's only rock'n roll.

Mick Jagger dropped out of college and his every move on-stage and off-stage seemed to signal a challenge to "respectable" standards. He never received a formal musical education, and even could not read music. However, he worked hard and emerged as the lead singer and songwriter in partnership with Richards, following the example of John Lennon and Paul McCartney's songwriting for The Beatles. Outside of the Rolling Stones, Jagger released solo albums with his original songs, as well as his versions of such hits as 'Use Me' by songwriter Bill Withers. Jagger also starred in several films, such as Freejack, Bent, and The Man from Elysian Fields. Mick Jagger fathered seven children from four women, donated to numerous school and charities, and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II at the Buckingham Palace in 2003.

Keith Richards, was a schoolmate of Mick Jagger since the primary school. In 1960 they contemplated starting up a band together. Since the formation of the Rolling Stones in 1962, Richards has been the principal songwriting partner with Jagger, and most of the songs on all Rolling Stones albums are credited to Jagger/Richards. Outside of the Rolling Stones, Richards toured with The New Barbarians, and also was the front-man of the X-pensive Winos in the 1980s. Besides his music career, Richards made a cameo appearance as the father of Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End filmed by his friend, director Gore Verbinski.

Other members of The Rolling Stones has been also enjoying their individual careers outside of the band. Multi-instrumentalist Ronnie Wood collaborated with such performers as Prince, Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Eric Clapton, and Aretha Franklin, among others. His collaboration with Rod Stewart resulted in a hit album. Wood is also an accomplished artist who sold about $10 million worth of his artworks. Drummer Charlie Watts, who has been ever faithful to his one and only wife, Shirley, is known for his consistency in refusing sexual favors from groupies. He is also a jazz band-leader, and commercial artist, who had solo shows and successfully auctioned his artworks.

The Rolling Stones have released 55 albums of original work and compilations, and sold over 200 million records word-wide during their career spanning over 45 years. "The Stones" played in all kinds of spaces from small clubs to big stadium arenas. In 2007 they even rocked the Tsar's Winter Palace with fifty thousand fans in St. Petersburg, Russia, where the communist revolution took place. They gave more large-scale shows internationally than any other existing band in the world, culminating in their 2005-2007 "A Bigger Band" tour with 147 concerts, the highest grossing tour of all time with $559 million earned.

Come on, Stones, give us more of your respectable shows, get us rocking, we can make it if we try.

Leslie Hoffman

Leslie grew up in the beautiful Adirondack Hamlet of Saranac Lake (population 5000) in Upstate New York. The Town is famous for being the original site of the National Vaudeville Artists Lodge which later was renamed the Will Rogers Memorial Hospital. As a child, she used to play at the William Morris Playground. Little wonder, she knew that someday she too would be an entertainer.

Leslie took gymnastic and ballet classes and was performing on stage by the age of four. Later, she attended acting classes at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and the Herbert Berghof Studios in New York City. This is when she discovered acting to be too slow for her, action was what she desired and that meant becoming a stuntwoman.

In the mid 70s, she discovered Paul Stader's gym in Santa Monica, California. There, Leslie practiced high falls, fights, fencing, etc. Less than two years later, she was able to join SAG on her first union job Two-Minute Warning and has supported herself ever since. She was the first "voted in" member of the "Society of Professional Stuntwomen". During this time, she worked on such shows as The Love Boat, Fantasy Island, 1941 and M*A*S*H.

The 80s, Leslie was the first Stuntwoman elected to the Board of Directors of SAG, the AFTRA Local Board and AFTRA National Board. She was the National Chairwoman of the Stunt & Safety Committee and the Co-Chair of the Young Performers Committee. She was sent to Sacramento to testify in possible changes to the Child Labor Laws after the "Twilight Zone" incident. Leslie was the first Stuntwoman to join Women In Film. She was Doris Roberts regular stunt double on Remington Steele, as well as working on shows like CHiPs, A Nightmare on Elm Street and Airplane!. During the 90s, she continues to work as a stuntwoman and stunt coordinator. She has coordinated projects such as the ABC Afterschool Special, "Me and My Hormones". This was Melissa Gilbert's directorial debut and starred Robin Strasser and Marion Ross with Brianne Murphy as the AC.

In the 90s, she was a member of the Stuntwomen's Association. She worked regularly on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and "Star Trek: Voyager" (1995). This also included being an assistant stunt coordinator for Dennis Madalone, the Stunt Coordinator of both "Star Trek" shows. She was also Roxann Dawson's "Torres" regular double on "Voyager".

Leslie gives back to the Industry by giving seminars on safety to various unions, film organizations and film colleges. Along with Brianne Murphy ASC, she did a seminar in cinematography at the Native American Film Festival in Santa Fe, New Mexico. In the AFTRA-SAG Young Performers Handbook, she wrote the chapter on safety. She has been interviewed extensively on the radio and in published articles. In the 1996 book, "Burns, Falls and Crashes", written by David Jon Wiener, you will find Chapter 13 is dedicated to her work.

Her stunts are widely recognized such as her doubling Queen Elizabeth II going down the banquet table in The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad!. Last year, she worked on Wes Craven's Scream 2. Recently, she finished working on Universal's feature Mystery Men.

Leslie has been invited to Special Events for these movies she appeared in: "Nightmare on Elm Street" An event honoring Wendie Jo Sperber at the screening of "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" and "1941".

Tom Rothman

Tom Rothman was recently named Chairman of Tristar Pictures, a joint venture with Sony Pictures Entertainment to make movies and television distributed worldwide by Sony under a revived Tristar Pictures banner. Previously, he served as Chairman and CEO of Fox Filmed Entertainment from 2000-2012. He left FFE January 1, 2013, following the most profitable decade in the company's history and after its split from parent News Corporation and reorganization into 21st Century Fox. In his capacity, he oversaw one the world's largest producers and distributors of motion picture and television product, including Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp., Fox Searchlight (which Rothman founded in 1994 and which won the 2008 Best Picture Oscar for Slumdog Millionaire (2008), Blue Sky Animation and Twentieth Century Fox Television. Together those entities have yearly revenues over $8 Billion, operate in more than 70 countries worldwide, and have been at the forefront of the digital media revolution. Profit margins under Rothman and his co-chairman James Gianopulos were consistently the highest in the sector and its 2012 operating profits were the best of any studio.

Rothman's tenure at Fox spanned more than eighteen years, longer than any creative head in the studio's history, with the exception of the legendary Darryl F. Zanuck. Before becoming Chairman, he held the positions of President of Twentieth Century Fox Film Group, President of Production for Twentieth Century Fox and President of Fox Searchlight. A few of the many varied and enduring films made under his oversight, include: Steven Spielberg's Lincoln (2012), Life of Pi (2012), The Descendants (2011), Cast Away (2000), Master and Commander (2003), Black Swan (2010), Walk the Line (2005), Juno (2007), Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012), The Devil Wears Prada (2006), Borat (2006), The X-Men series, Marley and Me (2008), Little Miss Sunshine (2006), Minority Report (2002), Moulin Rouge (2001), Boys Don't Cry (1999), Sideways (2004), Waiting to Exhale (1995), The Ice Age series, The Simpsons Movie (2007), Something About Mary (1998), The Crucible (1996), and the top two grossing movies of all time: Titanic (1997) and Avatar (2009). Fox films during his time were nominated for over 150 Academy Awards, won three Best Picture Oscars, and earned in excess of $40 Billion in worldwide box office. Current hit series from TCFTV include: Modern Family (2009), Glee (2009) and Homeland (2011). Under Rothman, for the first time in Hollywood history, all four of the company's major film production divisions were headed by women executives, all of whom had been mentored through the ranks at Fox.

Prior to Fox, Rothman was President of Worldwide Production for the Samuel Goldwyn Company. While at Goldwyn he was responsible for such films as Henry V (1989), Longtime Companion (1989), Truly Madly Deeply (1990), Much Ado About Nothing (1993), Wild at Heart (1990), Eat Drink Man Woman (1994), The Wedding Banquet (1993) and The Madness Of King George (1994). He discovered and championed numerous filmmakers who went on to great international acclaim, including Ang Lee, Anthony Minghella, and Kenneth Branagh. During his tenure, the company's pictures won the Palme D'Or at Cannes three times.

Rothman came to Goldwyn in 1989 from Columbia Pictures where he had been Executive Vice President, working for David Putnam and Dawn Steel. Before joining Columbia, Rothman was a partner at the New York entertainment law firm of Frankfurt, Kurnit, Klein and Selz where he represented numerous major industry figures in all arts-related fields including publishing, theatre, film, television, music, dance and photography, along with many independent filmmakers such as Spike Lee and Jim Jarmusch. In 1986, he co-produced Robert Frank's Candy Mountain (1988) and Jarmusch's Down By Law (1986), which was selected for the Cannes Film Festival.

He began his work life as an English teacher and soccer and lacrosse coach at the Salisbury School in Connecticut and was later a law clerk on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York.

Rothman graduated from Brown University in 1976, with Honors in English and American Literature, Magna Cum Laude, Phi Beta Kappa, and was an All New England selection in Division I Lacrosse. In 1980 he graduated from Columbia Law School, as a two-time James Kent Scholar, the school's highest academic distinction.

Rothman has written and hosted a television series entitled Fox Legacy, which includes almost fifty essays on the history of classic films. The show has received favorable notices in many publications, including the New York Times.

He has spoken to both undergraduate and graduate students on many occasions including classes and lectures at UCLA, USC, NYU, Brown, AFI and Columbia. He is a contributor to the Movie Business Book edited by Jason E. Squire', which is a reference used at film and business schools worldwide.

Among his many awards and distinctions are lifetime achievement recognitions from the IFP, the world's leading independent film organization, the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films and the Israeli Film Festival. He has received showman of the year awards from Variety and the Publicist Guild and been named one of the 50 smartest people in Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Columbia University honored him with the Arthur B. Krim Award for outstanding leadership in entertainment, and he was recently given the Corwin Award for Human Relations from the American Jewish Committee. He is a longstanding member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

He is currently producing Steven Spielberg's film Robopocalypse and he serves on the Board of Directors of Priceline.com, a public company and the world's leading online travel agency.

Al Capone

Infamous Chicago gangster Al Capone was born in the tough Williamsburgh section of Brooklyn, NY, the fourth of nine children of Italian immigrants from Naples. Capone was a born sociopath. In the sixth grade he beat up a teacher and promptly quit school. He picked up his education from the streets, "making his bones" when he joined the notorious James Street gang. This was run by Johnny Torrio, who later graduated Capone into the even more notorious Five Points gang. It was here that Capone became friends with Lucky Luciano, another who would become a hallmark in the '30s gangster era.

By his late teens Capone had been hired by Torrio and Frankie Yale as a bouncer at a saloon / brothel in Brooklyn. In 1918 he was involved in a bar fight over a prostitute with hoodlum Frank Galluccio. Gallucio went after Capone with a knife, resulting in Capone's picking up the moniker by which he would be known for the rest of his life--"Scarface" (although that word was NEVER used in his presence). Capone, however, would attribute the scar to wounds he received in battle while fighting with the famous "lost battalion" in France during World War I (the fact that Capone never spent one minute in the army was a minor point, apparently). By 1919 he was already suspected by New York police of at least two murders, so he moved to Chicago to work under Torrio's uncle, "Big" Jim Colosimo, a Chicago gangster who ran a string of brothels. Torrio and Colosimo had a dispute over bootlegging during the Prohibition era--Torrio was for it and Colosimo was against it. Torrio hatched a plot with Capone to have Colosimo "rubbed out" and they got their old pal Frankie Yale to do it. Over the next few years the new Torrio-Capone regime went to war with rival bootlegging gangs in Chicago. In 1924 they killed Charles Dion O'Bannion, head of the Irish North Side gang. That didn't end the war, however, which went on for several more years. Capone's younger brother Frank died in a hail of rival gangsters' bullets in 1924. In February 1925 Torrio, who had been badly wounded in a shootout, decided to retire. He told Capone, "It's all yours". At the tender age of 26, Al Capone found himself in control of a sophisticated crime organization with 1,000 gunmen at his command and a $300,000-a-week payroll. He was up to it, however, and made a smooth transition from a simple gun-toting leg-breaker, pimp and killer to a "business executive" (his business card stated that he sold "second-hand furniture"). It was estimated that at one point he had approximately half of Chicago's police department on his payroll, and his reach extended to the highest levels of Chicago's city government and even into the Illinois legislature (he was also suspected of having the Illinois governor "in his pocket"). He controlled the local political process by terrorizing voters into voting for candidates he picked. So great was his power that he claimed he "owned" Chicago, and once publicly assaulted the mayor of nearby Cicero--who was on his payroll--on the steps of City Hall for doing something without his clearance, while the local police looked the other way.

Capone was probably the first "equal-opportunity" mob boss. While many of his fellow Italian and Sicilian gangsters would only hire those from their own ethnic group, Capone hired Jews, Irish, Poles, Slovaks, blacks--as long as he considered them trustworthy, they could work for Capone. He even purged the Chicago organized crime scene of "Mustache Petes", the old-time Sicilian gangsters who he didn't think were capable of running a "modern" crime organization. Capone ran Chicago's gambling, prostitution and bootlegging empire, getting rich giving people what they wanted. He was soon wildly popular among the citizenry and was even cheered at the ballpark, while "respectable" citizens like President Herbert Hoover were not. Capone absorbed smaller gangs into his own--sometimes by negotiation, other times by gunfire--extending his reach to outside the Chicago environs and expanding his empire even further. He was, however, always concerned for his own safety and surrounded himself with trusted bodyguards (including Frank Gallucio, the man responsible for his nickname, "Scarface"). Several attempts were made on his life by rival mobsters--one time a convoy of cars full of gangster Hymie Weiss' gunmen shot up a restaurant at which Capone was dining; the place was destroyed, but Capone came through unscathed. Another time would-be assassins poisoned his soup, but his luck held out again.

On Valentine's Day in 1929 Capone ordered the bloody "St. Valentine's Day Massacre". His underlings found out the location of the warehouse of his rival George Moran (aka "Bugs" Moran) and that Moran was to attend a meeting there at a particular time. Capone sent a carload of his gunmen dressed as police officers to the address. Once there they lined up the seven men they found, but Moran wasn't among them; he was on the sidewalk heading towards the building when he saw the "police car" pull up in front and he quickly ducked into a nearby store. Nevertheless, Capone's gunmen machine-gunned them to death. Following the massacre (when Moran was later asked who he thought was responsible for the murders, he replied, "Only Capone kills like that"), public opinion about Capone began to change. He was not above killing on his own, either. When he was informed that his bodyguards John Scalise and Albert Anselmi were part of an assassination plot against him, he decided to take care of the matter himself. To put their minds at ease, he threw a banquet in their honor. While delivering a glowing testimonial to them, Capone suddenly pulled out an Indian club and beat both men to death.

Although local and state authorities had been trying to bring down Capone for years, the federal government finally managed to do it by prosecuting him for income-tax evasion. He was tried, found guilty and sentenced to 11 years in the federal penitentiary in Atlanta, GA. In 1934 he was transferred to Alcatraz, a federal prison on Alcatraz Island in the San Francisco Bay that was set up to hold the nation's worst criminals. He never finished out his sentence, though. In 1939 he was paroled because of the ravages of neurosyphilis, a disease he contracted while running Torrio's and Colosimo's whorehouses. He lived the last eight years of his life as a virtual zombie at his estate in Florida, his brain almost totally destroyed by the disease.

Charles MacArthur

"Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers out there are starving!" When Patrick Dennis's fictional Auntie Mame uttered this pithy observation, she could have been speaking of Charles MacArthur. Charlie never shied away from the feast, and he certainly never went hungry. Arriving in November 1895 in Scranton, Pennsylvania, Charlie was the second youngest of seven children born to stern evangelist William Telfer MacArthur and Georgiana Welsted MacArthur. His early life was dominated by his father's ministry, leading the family to travel cross country wherever the elder MacArthur's calling took them. Charlie spent much of his time during those years hiding in the bathroom -- the only place offering even a modicum of privacy for a member of such a large family -- reading virtually anything he could get his hands on. He developed a passion for the written word that would last him to his dying day. Resisting Reverend MacArthur's insistent urging that his son follow him into the ministry, young Charlie left the family's rural New York home soon after finishing high school. Heading off to the Midwest, he took a reporter's job at The Oak Leaves, a suburban Chicago newspaper owned by two of his older brothers and run by his older sister. His first professional taste of crafting something for others to read whetted his appetite for even more. Intently determined to pursue a calling which for him was as strong as the calling his father had heard, Charlie went to the City News Bureau of Chicago as the first step in his journey toward life as a journalist. Though only 19, the irreverent sense of humor and dislike for mindless authoritarianism for which he would later be so well known was already quite evident in the application he filled out for the job. In the space entitled "Tell us in exactly seventy-five words why you wish to become a reporter," Charlie wrote: "I want to become a reporter more because I like the work than for any other reason. I feel that even if I should branch off in another profession, the experience obtained in getting up on your toes after news would be valuable. These are my reasons. More words would be useless." The excitement of working in brash and brawling pre-1920s Chicago didn't quite satisfy Charlie's hunger for something more, however, and he soon hooked up with General "Black Jack" Pershing, galloping off to Mexico to join in the hunt for the infamous Pancho Villa. When World War I broke out, Charlie joined the Army's 149th Field Artillery, part of the Rainbow Division. During his time in France, he and his battery mate shot down a German plane with nothing more than a machine gun. Later in the war, Charlie sustained a mild shrapnel wound. In 1919 he penned his only book, A Bug's Eye View of the War (later republished in 1929 by Harper Collins as War Bugs) about his unit's adventures and misadventures during some of the most brutal and bloodiest fighting in history. Returning to Chicago just in time for Prohibition, the Roaring 20s, and Al Capone, Charlie became one of Chicago's most well-known and widely read reporters. He authored some of the most enduring pieces ever printed in the pages of the Chicago Tribune and Daily News. His style was inventive, charming, and witty. Readers couldn't get enough. Once, when writing about a dentist accused of sexually molesting his female patients, Charlie chose the headline "Dentist Fills Wrong Cavity". He also wrote several short stories, two of which, "Hang It All" (1921) and "Rope" (1923), were published in H.L. Mencken's The Smart Set magazine. His star continued to rise, and he eventually headed off to the greener pastures of New York City. Once settled in the Big Apple, he began to shift his efforts toward playwrighting. His first true Broadway success was in 1926 with the play "Lulu Belle", written in collaboration with Edward Sheldon. It would later be remade into a 1948 movie starring Dorothy Lamour and George Montgomery. His next play, "Salvation", written in collaboration with Sidney Howard, enjoyed a moderate Broadway run. During the summer of 1927, Charlie and long-time friend and collaborator, Ben Hecht, rented the premises of the Nyack Girl's Academy as a haven from which they could create their own special brand of playwrighting. Helen Hayes (the future Mrs. Charles MacArthur) would tell friends of times when she or Rose Hecht would visit to bring in food or other supplies for their men, and the building would be positively filled with shouts of laughter and merriment. The result of this seclusion was the 1928 Broadway debut of "The Front Page". The phenomenal stage success of "The Front Page" prompted Charlie to head to Hollywood and screenplay work. Having already developed such works as The Girl Said No, Billy the Kid and The Unholy Garden, he hit the jackpot in 1931, first with the movie version of The Front Page (again collaborating with Ben Hecht), which won Academy Award nominations for Best Picture, Best Director (Lewis Milestone), and Best Actor (Adolphe Menjou), and then, with the release of The Sin of Madelon Claudet, which netted a 1932 Best Actress Oscar for its star, Helen Hayes. The film also won awards at that year's Venice Film Festival for both its leading lady and its director, Edgar Selwyn. Charlie's screenplay for Rasputin and the Empress, the only movie ever to feature siblings John Barrymore, Ethel Barrymore and Lionel Barrymore together in the same film, gained him his own first Academy Award nomination (in 1934, for Best Original Story). Even though their efforts had turned mostly to filmmaking by this point, it was also during this period that Hecht and MacArthur produced their second smash theatrical effort, "Twentieth Century", which debuted on Broadway in December 1932, and was later made into the well-received 1934 movie starring John Barrymore and Carole Lombard. Unhappy with the machinations of Hollywood's fledgling film industry, however, MacArthur and Hecht decided to set up their own shop in Astoria, New York, producing, writing, directing, and even making uncredited onscreen appearances in a series of films such as The Scoundrel (poking fun at themselves by playing downtrodden patrons of a charity flop house) and Crime Without Passion (in which they portrayed -- what else? -- newspaper reporters). Their work earned much critical acclaim, culminating in the 1936 Best Writing (Original Story) Academy Award for The Scoundrel. Their 1939 collaboration to turn Rudyard Kipling's epic poem into the movie Gunga Din, starring Cary Grant, Victor McLaglen and Douglas Fairbanks Jr., was recognized in 1999 by the National Film Registry, and their adaptation of Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights garnered the two yet another Academy Award Best Writing (Screenplay) nomination in 1940. That year also saw the remake of "The Front Page" into the popular movie, His Girl Friday, starring Rosalind Russell and Cary Grant. The advent of World War II prompted Charlie to interrupt his writing career and sign on in his country's service once again. He began his second stint of service years as a Major in the Chemical Warfare Service, returning home at the war's conclusion a Lt. Colonel. By now, the father of two children, Mary and James MacArthur, and husband to "The First Lady of the American Theatre", Charlie had amassed a considerable amount of fame in his own right, yet was still looking for something different. Resuming his theatrical and film work, he also took on the duties of editing and publishing the foundering Theatre World magazine, but left after little more than a year, dissatisfied with the politics and constraints of working in a corporate atmosphere. The tragic loss of his 19-year-old daughter to polio in 1949 was a blow from which Charlie would never quite recover. Though he continued to work on screenplays and movie scripts up until his death in 1956, some of which enjoyed a modicum of success, he would never again completely recapture the freewheeling enthusiasm of his earlier days. When his son grew old enough to begin considering a career of his own, his father advised, "Do anything you like, son, but never become a playwright. It's a death worse than fate!" Charles MacArthur left behind a lasting imprint upon both those who knew him personally and those who knew him only through his published works. Supremely disdainful of anything even remotely false or affected, Charlie nevertheless did follow the path his father wished him to take, albeit in his own inimical fashion. His words carried a truth and sincerity few writers have been able to achieve. His unique mix of subtle irony, gentle sarcasm, and poignant pathos reached as deeply into his audience at least as well as any fiery sermon from a pulpit ever could. As Ben Hecht said in the eulogy he delivered at his friend's memorial service (and later expanded upon in his 1957 book, "Charlie: The Improbable Life and Times of Charles MacArthur"), "Charlie was more than a man of talent. He was himself a great piece of writing. His gaiety, wildness and kindness, his love for his bride Helen, and his two children, and for his clan of brothers and sisters -- his wit and his adventures will live a long, long while".

Pat Cashman

Pat Cashman is a versatile performer; From voice-overs, to acting as well as writer,producer and director.

Born in Bend Oregon, Pat made his way to Seattle, Washington, where one of his first jobs, he produced television commercials for the Seattle Mariners in the late 70s and early 80s, which were considered to be the best in baseball. One of his commercials in the 1981 season ended up being a giveaway. In the commercial, which was supposed to be for jacket night, Tom Paciorek starts by saying the giveaway is funny nose glasses night, which he is corrected by Cashman saying it's actually jacket night. The night the Mariners gave away a Mariniers vinyl rain jacket, many fans were disappointed that they didn't receive the funny nose glasses, so in April of 1982 against the New York Yankees, fans were given a pair of funny nose glasses and throughout the game could receive prizes if their face with the nose glasses on, was shown on the Diamond vision screen.

By 1984, Cashman was brought on to become a cast member, writer, director and producer for KING TV's show Almost Live!, which he served for 15 years. Pat brought us many memorable characters such as Uncle Buzz, Randy Scott, the Disc Jockey that doubled as a waiter or dentist, as well as great comedy sketches like Plumber and This here Place, which was a spoof of PBS' This Old House.

Besides television, Pat worked on radio as well. He stated as the morning host on KING radio am 1090, but was moved over to KQBZ 100.7, the Buzz from 1994-1999, which consisted of he, Lisa Foster and Dustin Hornby. During his tenure at the Buzz, he came up with his own characters and many comedic bits. One of his bits was entitled "Life With Leykis" which was a series of comedic spoofs of Tom Leykis. Tom played the bits on his radio show and would have him laughing. In April of 1999, Pat and his morning team was fired by Buzz management because they felt that he was "too nice". The station wanted more shows that appealed to young men and their slogan became "radio for guys".

Pat wasn't out of work for long, Fisher Broadacasting, which owns KOMO am 1000 hired Pat to do the morning show, replacing KOMO morning icon, Larry Nelson. His tenure at KOMO was brief; In 2002, KOMO changed their format from talk to all news.

One year later, Pat found himself as the morning host/Disc Jockey for KJR FM 95.7, but that too was short lived as KJR started phasing out morning DJs.

Pat has done other things, such as performing on two tracks in Bob Rivers' "Twisted Christmas" album for 2000; "Chipmunks Roasting on an Open Fire". His 2 tracks were, "the Twisted Chipmunk Song" and "Chipmunks Roasting on an Open Fire"

In addition, Pat has done many television and radio commercials for Taco Time, the Washington State Fryer Comission, the Downtown Seattle Merchants Association, Tim's Cascade Potato Chips, an infomercial for Pierre Money Mart. Pat has served as substitute host for KING TV 5's Evening Magazine and has hosted pledge drives for KCTS 9, in Seattle, Washington.

Pat also works as a keynote speaker for corporate gatherings, employee seminars, awards banquets and charity events.

Tyrone Love

Born in Bath UK on 1st August, he is the cousin of fashion guru Gok Wan. Tyrone studied acting at the kings theatre stages school. later on he trained as a chef and in silver service where his skills were chosen to serve at the anniversary D-day banquet to the worlds heads of states including the royal family and the president of the united states among others. Tyrone is an accomplished musician and plays a number of instruments including piano, guitar, didgeridoo and more. He is in talks with the director of a new Kris Marshell film for one of his songs to be the end title track which he wrote especially for the film. He also played ,arranged , produced and recorded the song He moved from Kingston ,London to the south cost

Gary Numan

Gary Numan was born, Gary Anthony James Webb in Hammersmith, London on 8th of March 1958. His first job was working as a dispatch boy with a courier company at Heathrow where his father worked as a bus driver. His first band was Mean Street who only used him because he had a lot of music gear. He later joined The Lasers where he met Paul Gardiner who he later formed Tubeay Army with. The first album (Tubeway Army) was recorded with Gary, Paul and Gary's uncle (Jess Lidyard) on drums. It was while recording this album that Gary discovered a synthesizer in a recording studio which was being used by his recording company - Beggars Banquet. It was this discovery which prompted Gary to start making music using synths.. His first hit - Are 'friends' electric was released in 1979 and reached no. 1 in the British charts. This was followed by Cars which also reached no. 1. Today, 30 years after his first record release, Gary Numan is still recording studio albums and performing live.

Carlo Corazon

Carlo Corazon was born in Virginia, but grew up in Fairfield County, Connecticut. As a child growing up in the 'projects' (as they were called) he put on plays starring his younger brothers and sister then charged his parents to attend. You could see even as child Carlo was torn between artistic values and monetary values. As a teenager he filmed his younger siblings football games and then would help edit and score a highlight reel with his Mom (Martha) for the season's banquet finale.

In junior high school Carlo was in charge of the stage lighting for the plays while starring in sports. In high school, he lettered and starred in both Varsity football and baseball. He also took a class on 'stagecraft' learning the art work and stage design for theatre. Between working and sports, on the outside Carlo's life appeared to be on the up and up, though in his time off he would journey into the darker side of life as a teen.

By the early 1980s, Carlo's son was born. That was a profound moment in his life. It was also a quick dose of reality for the athletic and creative genius/problem child (one minute a star - the next minute a husband and father) but it may have saved his life. Life on the streets as a thug can take its toll on one's health and did for some of Carlo's partners in crime. He saw a few friends and acquaintances pass. It also took a toll on his marriage. He and first wife Laurie divorced after three years. Working in a 'dead end' job and just unhappy with his life's direction, he started playing football again in a Fairfield County league with one of his best friends where he not only starred, but helped lead his team to several titles. Unfortunately a knee injury ended any chance of him playing anymore or possibly going further with football (American).

By 1986, he looked towards the theatre and within days after signing on into an acting class in Bridgeport, Connecticut he found himself co-starring in a version of the Sam Sheppard play 'True West'. That helped him land his first role in film as 'The Jogger' for an independent film called 'Beyonder' by Mike Leoce. This eventually led him to a follow up role in 'The Game' written and directed by David Prank. It was while filming the 'Beyonder' that one of the female leads introduced him to his acting mentors; Rick Poole and Kathryn Gately at a Theatre Row acting studio inside the Nat Horne Theatre in NYC. There he also took dance classes from greats like Nat Horne, and Anna Sokolov. Poole and Gately worked at the Neighborhood Playhouse prior to opening their own studios and were arguably two of the best disciples of Sandy Meisner in NYC at the time. At the same time he competed in a modeling pageant from which the likes of Patrick Dempsey emerged. This gave Carlo the opportunities he needed to land on a Soap Opera in Manhattan, then several other print and film opportunities in New York then Los Angeles (ie:Structure, calendars, film and TV). A good friend who was the Vice President of the 'Stephen Nichols' fan club, offered to be President of Carlo's fan club. Her name is Jodi Davidowski. Unfortunately for the world Jodi is no longer with us. She passed away in 2004 from a brain tumor. Her kindness, and friendship will be missed by a lot of people, especially by Stephen and Carlo.

Traversing coasts and once in Los Angeles he wandered through agents, managers, and auditions landing several roles and working night owl jobs like bartending at the 'Red Onion' and private dancing. In 1993 he and his business partner, photographer Dean McKeever decided to put together a female swimsuit calendar called 'The Supercalendar' that featured the likes of 'Gena Lee Nolin' (see photo gallery) just prior to her fame and fortune. Other photographers that helped out on the project were; Chris Shay, Brent Schafer, Denice Porter, and Jimmy Pickering.

In 1995, Carlo co-produced, wrote, directed, and starred in a movie for television, which aired on a Cox Communications cable channels in early 1997 and which co-starred his friend actor Richard Dino (From Dusk 2 Dawn) also featuring several family members (including a photo of his son).

In March of 1996, Carlo attended the 'Academy Awards and Governor's Ball' with Richard Dino and the two headed to the Vanity Fair party at Morton's on Melrose and Robertson in Beverly Hills where he ran into a former classmate from New York who was starring in a sitcom.

By the summer of 1998, his son chose a prestigious 'East Coast' school to do his undergrad degree. It was at that time Carlo also met his soul-mate and second wife Mariana. She is from the Palermo Hollywood area in the Capital, Buenos Aires, Argentina and is over 15 years his junior. They currently reside in the 'Sand Canyon' area of Santa Clarita in Los Angeles county with their 'Yorkie' named 'Anush'. The three spend a lot of time at the home of Mariana's Mom - Ana, and relax by playing golf and vacationing to Argentina visiting Mariana's family and friends or heading back east to visit Carlo's Mom-Martha and his son M1ke.

Though not completely giving up the 'acting bug' Carlo is currently pursuing an executive career. After holding the position of President of his privately owned corporation; Sidustar International, Inc. he is now a Vice President with the number one emergency and rapid mass notification company in the world; the National Notification Network (3nonline.com). He also received his M.B.A. online as an honorary degree from Almeda University for his contributions in communications and technology. Still he is quick to say that he's not the executive star of the family. That title belongs to his son Michael, who received his MBA in May (2005) from UCONN's graduate school in Stamford, Connecticut, and had also received his Bachelor of Science from Fairfield University in Southern Connecticut in 2002. Michael was also invited to be a member of the prestigious club, 'Mensa International', an intellectual society.

Shannon Mosley

Shannon is originally from Omaha, Nebraska and graduated with a BA in Psychology from the Univ. Missouri-Columbia. His first taste of acting came as a child during his church's Easter and Christmas plays and then modeled in several fashion shows during his collegiate days. Following college, Shannon continued to walk the run-ways in fashion and bridal shows, been seen in multiple commercials and industrial/instructional videos, and has hosted numerous banquets and corporate events. Mr. Mosley has played a supporting role in several independent films and lives in Los Angeles where he works as an actor. You can find Shannon featured in a multitude of television and film scores; and also at his local gym, where he enjoys working-out and playing basketball. In his free time, Shannon loves to travel, attend live musicals and sporting events, and entertain friends and family.

Carl McCoy

Carl McCoy was born in Lambeth, London, and grew up in nearby Brixton.

He is a co founder of Gothic Rock band, Fields of the Nephilim. He was lead singer, lyric writer, co composer and artist from 1984 to 1991. In 1992, he left Fields of the Nephilim to form a new band called "The Nefilim"; meanwhile, the rest of the band hired a new lead singer and became "Rubicon". "The Nefilim" released one album and one single in 1996, before Carl fell out with the record label "Beggars Banquet" over tour plans and band presentation. "Rubicon" released two albums and some singles. Carl briefly resurrected the original line up of Fields of the Nephilim for an ill-fated reunion between 1997 to 1998, before musical differences once again divided the band. From 2003 to present, Carl McCoy has been recording and performing as Fields of the Nephilim, accompanied by a new band line up. To date, Fields of the Nephilim have released two EPs, several albums, a live album, a best of album, several singles, a collection of their promo videos, two VHS concert videos, and a DVD. A new live DVD and CD was in the pipeline in August 2010.

Alongside his long time partner, Lynn, Carl works as Sheerfaith. Sheerfaith produce artwork, graphic design, animation, sound production and related creative services. Sheerfaith have also been responsible for a number of different pieces of artwork and graphic design for FOTN and Nefilim releases, as well as for band merchandise and the official FOTN web site.

Carl McCoy had a cameo role in the 1990 horror film "Hardware", written and directed by his friend Richard Stanley. Richard also directed the first two Fields of the Nephilim promo videos, Preacherman and Blue Water, as well as assisted with the bands distinctive western look. More recently, Richard has recorded numerous Fields of the Nephilim concerts for a proposed DVD entitled "Ceremonies".

Carl also assisted on the 2000 film "The 13th Sign", by voicing the villain (Dravel), operating the second assistant camera (as Sheerfaith), and by providing the closing credits music (Darkcell AD).

Having shown an interest in the occult from a young age, Carl has his own occult order known as the Order of the 24th Moment.

Carl McCoy has a partner called Lynn, and two daughters, Scarlett and Eden.

He lives in England.

Janet Ivey

Janet Ivey is committed to enriching the lives of children through education and programming. With over ten years in the media, Ivey has captivated Nashville and beyond with her work and she has received 11 Regional Emmys and 5 Gracie Allen awards for her work.

Most notably, Janet Ivey has been recognized for her work on NashvillePublic Television children's series Janet's Planet, an interstitial series she helped create. This dynamic and fast-paced series is geared to 6 - 10 year-olds and focuses on scientific and historical facts and events. Viewers get to travel at the speed of thought and the interstitials air throughout the day between acclaimed children's shows like "Zoom," "Maya and Miguel," and "Arthur." (Janet's Planet can be seen on 100+ public television stations nationwide.)

March 17th, 2012, Janet's Planet wins its 11th Regional Emmy for Children's Programs at the Mid-South Regional Emmy Award.

January 2012, Janet completed writing 52 five minute episodes for a preschool DVD series for United Methodist Publishing House.

In the October 6th, 2011 edition of the Nashville Scene's Best Of Nashville issue, Janet Ivey will be featured as Best Children's TV Host: Janet Ivey, JANET'S PLANET

June 24, 2011 Janet's Planet will be honored by STEMflorida, Inc. with the following award: Best STEM Informational Video Targeting Engagement in a Challenged Target Industry Cluster Janet's Planet/Space Florida, Inc. - Exploring Microgravity Video.

February 17, 2011 Janet received word that she was the winner of her 5th esteemed Gracie Award for her entry: Janet's Planet Health Interstitials in the Outstanding Children/Adolescent Non-Animated Program category.

January 29, 2011, Janet won her 10th Regional Emmy for Janet's Planet Health Interstitials at the Mid-South Regional Emmy Awards.

November 2010, Parenting Journals, informed Janet that upon review of janetsplanet.com, they decided to bestow the Parenting Journals Editor's Choice Award for her site. The award is made to selected parenting web sites that exhibit: 1) Quality information on parenting topics including; child care, education, child health, babies, toys, kids activities, ethics, and character development, 2) User accessibility and support, and 3) Exceptional web design and easy navigation.

In the October 2010 Nashville Lifestyles magazine, Janet was named as one of Nashville's 25 Most Beautiful People both inside and out!

Buzz Aldrin has chosen Janet to be one of his ShareScience Education Ambassadors for his ShareScience Foundation because of her enthusiasm and dedication for science education.

In the February 5th , 2010 issue of the Nashville Business Journal, Janet was named as one of the 30 members of the Women of Influence Class of 2010. She was recognized in the Inspiration and Mentor Category.

On February 18, 2010, Janet received word that she was the winner of the esteemed Gracie Award for her entry: Janet Ivey - Exploring Microgravity, in the Outstanding Children/Adolescent Non-Animated Program category. In a year with many high quality entries, "Exploring Microgravity" displayed superior quality in writing, production and programming.

On January 30, 2010, Janet's Planet received two Emmys one for Informational/Instructional Special Program "Exploring Microgravity," and one for Informational/Instructional Series for "Janet's Planet Health Interstitials."

On June 3rd, 2009 Janet accepted her 3rd Gracie Allen Award for the Outstanding Children's/Adolescent Program Category for Janet's Planet still reeling from her January 2009 Informational and Instructional Emmy for Janet's Planet, her sixth Emmy for her "planet." Other Emmy wins for Ivey include the 2008 Regional Emmy in the Informational and Instructional Emmy for Janet's Planet, and the 2006 Regional Emmy in the Children's Programs Category for Janet's Planet presented by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

In 2005, Janet won the Emmy in the Children's Educational Category and the Emmy in Children's Entertainment Category for Janet's Planet. "Janet's Planet" garnered the Emmy in 2003 in the Children's Educational Category and Janet won an Emmy in 1997 in the Best Children's Video Category for her roles as co-writer and on-camera talent for "The Opryland Kid's Club" video.

Continuing in the vein of outer space information, Ivey will be releasing her Exploring Microgravity production in partnership with Space Florida to be used by all elementary and middle school teachers and for the state of Florida's Virtual School curriculum. (Florida Department of Education announced the adoption of Janet's Planet for use in the September 2009 in the Florida Space Advocate.)

In addition to Janet's Planet, Ivey is celebrating her ninth year as the co-host of PBS's "Tennessee's Wildside" with Bill Cody, has authored two children's books, Tell Me About Heaven, I Think I'm Forgetting (Ideal's Children's Books), and Something's Different In Samesville (Self-Published). Behind the scenes, Ivey produced spots for the local to national broadcast of ZOOM, entitled "Zoom Into Action" in partnership with WGBH and Nashville Public Television.

Janet was tapped to be the Assistant Director of the Mother Goose Club, a literacy program targeted for 3-5 year olds that hit the airwaves and Internet in June 2009. Janet is also a producer, writer and host for "Arts Breaks," a three minute package featuring local art and artists in the Middle Tennessee area for Nashville Public Television.

Supplementing her Nashville Public Television programs, Janet has been featured in national television and radio commercials (Banquet Home-style Bakes, Centennial Wireless, Old Time Pottery, Mohawk Floorz and Actonel for Proctor and Gamble to name a few.) She has voiced and appeared in many children's videos, titles that include: "25 Christmas Songs Kids Love To Sing," "25 Action Songs Kids Love to Sing" and "25 Sunday School Songs Kids Love to Sing" for EMI, "The Land of Gnoo" for Sparrow/EMI, "Baby Praise" for Deep Media, and "Slush-Puppy" for Highlander Entertainment.

Janet has hosted Pillsbury Kid's Bake-Offs, General Mills' Silliest Kid In America Contest, performed live with Barney for Hit Entertainment, performed with Boobah for Ragdoll Entertainment in their "Look What I Can Do" tour, and in 2008 was featured as 'the mom' in a Disney commercial promoting a Hannah Montana concert.

Warm and ebullient, Janet Ivey is dedicated to producing quality kid's entertainment that inspires, enlightens and entertains.

More information about Janet Ivey is available @ janetsplanet.com and the Janet's Planet album "Rock The Planets," can be purchased on I-Tunes, CD Baby and Amazon.com.


Mader's versatility and innovative style has allowed him to create a slew of evocative and memorable scores such as Ang Lee's ground- breaking films The Wedding Banquet and Eat Drink, Man Woman, each nominated for Academy Awards, with wins for the Golden Globe, Berlin, and honors at the Cannes Film Festival.

At the age of five, Mader was transfixed by his grandfather's 78 RPM gramophone renditions of popular 1920's French music, ranging from the songs of Frehel to the impressionistic sounds of Maurice Ravel. Later, the scores of Nino Rota, Morricone and Mancini proved to be new inspirations, and Mader's palette has given birth to a series of memorable melodies that have added the richest of colors to many films.

Following this worldwide success, Mader scored what would be an impressive lineup of high-profile independent films like Alexandre Rockwell's In The Soup (Grand Prize at Sundance Film Festival), Clockwatchers directed by Lisa Sprecher, starring Lisa Kudrow, Toni Colette and Parker Posey, and Wonsuk Chin's Too Tired To Die, starring Mira Sorvino.

Previous work includes Robert Greenwald's Steal This movie (the Abbie Hoffman story) starring Vincent D'Onofrio, Janeane Garofolo and Jeanne Tripplehorn, and more recently, Pete Smalls Is Dead starring Peter Dinklage, Tim Roth & Steve Buscemi, and the Sundance favorite Bhutto, a highly charged documentary about the life and assassination of Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

Mader was introduced to the world of fil m music at age 19 when noted French film composer Michel Magne took him on as his assistant. Mader then met the eccentric avant-garde musician Hector Zazou who had recently become the caretaker of a crumbling nineteenth century castle on the outskirts of Marseilles, which he quickly turned into an artists' commune. Mader moved in and began working on a series of collaborations with Zazou and other artists. Eventually tired of communal life, he decided to relocate to New York City, passing through the London punk music scene on the way. Once in Manhattan, he formed his own group Band Apart and released two albums on Crammed Discs. He also recorded a solo cabaret album *Tangobidet, which netted him substantial critical acclaim, including a laudatory three page article in "Details" magazine.

The album *Cinemusica, released in January 2011, is a collection of some of Mader's favorite pieces from the vaults of his publishing and recording catalogues. These pieces incorporate material dating from his early days in New York to the choicest of his recent musical explorations in Los Angeles. Mader created an evocative Baroque score for the multimillion dollar Hallmark miniseries La Femme Musketeer starring Gerard Depardieu, Michael York, Nastassja Kinski, John Rhys-Davies. He also created a vibrant Latin score for The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit for director Stuart Gordon and Disney, starring Edward James Olmos, Joe Mantegna and Esai Morales.

Beyond film scoring, Mader continues a prolific career as a composer and producer. His new release '5 Legged Fish' is a groundbreaking album merging timeless melodies with tasteful electronics soundscapes. His unique and ever versatile voice keeps him at the fore front of the musical avant-garde scene.

Clifford Hume

Clifford was born in Barking, Essex, and spent most of his early years divided between the family homes in Ilford and Clacton-on-Sea. He started acting in plays at Uphall Primary School (usually taking the comedy roles) and then appeared in a few productions at Chadwell Heath High School, where he gained his O levels.

Clifford started semi-professionally acting at the age of 16 in his local theatre (the Kenneth More, Ilford) and quickly established himself as a versatile character actor, and as a stand-up comic and magician on the cabaret and club circuit.

Turning full time professional in 1997, he progressed on to performing more and more cabaret, but still maintained his connection to the stage. Clifford has appeared in all genre of production from classics such as Marlowe's Edward II, playing the scheming Earl of Lancaster through to comedies, farces and the odd musical. One of his most acclaimed roles was the patriarchal Big Daddy in Tennessee William's Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, for the award winning Big Splash Theatre Company. In the past Clifford has supported some legends in the British theatre and cabaret circuit including, Danny la Rue, Bert Weedon and George Melly.

In video, film and TV, Clifford has worked with Kula Shaker, Ruby Wax and most recently Cheryl Cole and Al Murray - The Pub Landlord.

Recently he played Sir Winston Churchill, in the acclaimed Farewell Winston, and Clifford is still heavily involved touring the country with his one man (or should that be one woman?) show - Dame Nellie Better, he has even appeared as Dame at the London Palladium in a charity pantomime for McMillan Nurses which also starred Sinitta.

His other credits include commercials for Capital One Credit Cards, the Samaritans and Cadbury's Crème Eggs, TV shows the Ruby Wax Show and Ready, Steady Cook (Christmas Special). He spent two years as Sir Topham Hatt (the Fat Controller) for Hit Entertainment's Thomas and Friends and two years as Henry VIII at the renowned Medieval Banquet in London.

In his spare time Clifford is a keen historian specializing in London history and the events and people surrounding the Titanic disaster. He is a supporter of the wonderful Leyton Orient Football Club and also takes great delight hacking his way around a golf course!

Abdolreza Kahani

Abdolreza Kahani born in 1973 is an Iranian filmmaker. In 2009, Kahani's film Twenty won the Special Jury Prize and the Prize of Ecumenical Jury at the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival. The film observes a small band of employees trying to save a depressed Iranian banquet hall which the owner has decided to close in 20 days.

Danica D'Hondt

Danica d'Hondt was born in London, England, of an Irish mother and a Belgian father. Originally an actress, Danica soon found that she had a natural talent as a theatre director, a role not easily accepted for women at that time. She began her career at the age of nine by appearing in a movie at Shepperton Studios in England. She worked in radio, TV and on stage in Canada, where her family emigrated while she was still in school. She graduated from High School in Montreal, and returned to England after attending the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. She worked as a stage actress in London, also performing in radio and TV dramas for the BBC, and then relocated to Toronto, Canada, where she became a CBC-TV game show personality and a talk show host at an unusually early age, interviewing celebrities such as Broadway actress/dancer Gwen Verdon and the late Jazz great Dizzy Gillespie. She also appeared on TV shows out of New York City, and in summer stock theatre in New York and Illinois. She starred with comic Harvey Korman in Living Venus, a film shot in Chicago in 1960.

Danica's Hollywood career spans the years from 1960 to 1990, during which time she starred in "B" movies, played supporting roles in major Hollywood movies, and performed guest-starring roles on such popular TV shows of the time as The Man from U.N.C.L.E.; The Wild Wild West and Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea. Naively, she turned down the role of "Ginger" in Gilligan's Island.

She left Hollywood from 1966 to 1971, during which time she worked as a theatre director in the San Francisco Bay Area, where she also wrote for a magazine, produced educational films and taught acting at her own school, "The Actor's Lab", on Sacramento Street.

Upon her return to Hollywood, in 1971, she directed several very successful stage productions, worked as a writer and associate producer in film and television, and did a stint as a television journalist, becoming the Consumer and Financial Reporter to a syndicated daytime magazine show called "Breakaway".

Relocating to Northern California in the 1990s, Danica has been occupied with several businesses she runs with her husband and is active in real estate investing. She has been busy as a writer with two non-fiction books published, and several others in the works. After Dan Brown's success, she wants to attempt a novel.

In between the variety of career changes, Danica has been busy raising a family of six children. She currently lives with her husband on a small farm in the Sierra Foothills, where she writes, teaches, and helps her winemaker husband tend their vineyard. The couple also owns a large restaurant and banquet facility in Placerville, California, named "Sequoia".

Knut Haukelid

On May 17, 1911, as Norway was jubilantly celebrating its Constitution Day, two Norwegian citizens were born in Flatbush, a sector of Brooklyn, New York. They were twins. The boy was Knut Haukelid. He was to become a leader of the Norwegian underground during World War II and is given major credit for blocking the Germans from producing and shipping "heavy water," essential to their objective of developing the atomic bomb. His exploits were depicted in the 1965 movie, "The Heroes of Telemark." The daughter, born to Bjørgulv and Sigrid Haukelid, was never depicted in a movie. Rather, her destiny was to star in movies. Sigrid Guri Haukelid was to become Sigrid Gurie.

At the time the twins were born, their father, Bjørgulv Haukelid, was working as a civil engineer with the New York Subway System, a job he had held since 1902. He left that job when the twins were less than a year old, and the Hauklids set sail for Norway (at the same time the Titanic left for its doomed maiden voyage).

Knut came back to the United States to attend Massachusetts State College, returning to Norway in 1929. He completed his education in the 1930s, attending the Dresden School of Technology and the University of Berlin. He then returned to Norway, and was working for his father's engineering firm, Haukelid og Five, when the Germans invaded the country in April, 1940.

Haukelid evaded the Nazis and became a lieutenant in Kompani Linge (Norway's most successful resistance-group during WWII). Under his command part of the group snuck into the German Heavy Water Plant at Rjukan and blew it up thus setting back German endeavours to produce a product vital to the development of an atomic bomb. Then, when the Germans decided to ship the surviving heavy water they had already stored back to Germany in barrels, Haukelid and his team snuck aboard the ferry which had to haul it across a lake, set a time-bomb on board the ferry timed to blow up at the exact time when the ferry was in the middle of the lake. The plot worked perfectly with the entire German cache of heavy water sinking to the bottom of the lake.

Hitler was stopped from being the first to produce the atomic bomb (a quest that no doubt - had it succeeded - would help the Germans win the war). The successful sabotage by Haukelid and his men gave the United States time to complete their own atomic bomb. In an impressive way the actions of Kompani Linge directly contributed to the end of WW II. Knut Haukelid's wartime deeds have been widely covered. Among the numerous high military awards bestowed on him at the war's end by five grateful nations was the Medal of Freedom with Silver Palm, by the United States of America.

Knut graduated from the Norwegian Military Academy in 1948. He served as Major in the Telemark Infantry Regiment, and was later appointed Lieutenant General and head of the Home guard of Greater Oslo. After he retired, Knut often lectured, at home and abroad, on the importance of fostering and supporting resistance forces to serve behind enemy lines in wartime. In 1983, when Vice President George Bush visited in Norway, he invited Knut to a formal dinner at the American Embassy.

In the Spring of 1984, on the 40th anniversary of the sabotage action against the heavy water plant at Vemork, the survivors of the Kompani Linge group who participated in the action were honored at a reception at the residence of the American Ambassador, Mark Evans Austad. Nine of the 12 survivors were present when they were surprised with a gift of cufflinks from President Ronald Reagan, who also sent them a personal letter. They also received letters of congratulations from John W. Vessey Jr., Chief for the American High Command. Representatives of the Norwegian Parliament and the Army were also among those present when Knut Haukelid was singularly surprised and honored with an American passport (having been born in the US).

On Friday, October 18, 1985, Knut Haukelid was honored at the Second Annual Hall of Fame Banquet in Minot, North Dakota. He was one of five people named that night to the Scandinavian-American Hall of Fame - again an honor due not only by his deeds but because of his birth in the United States and his holding of dual-citizenship. In later years, Knut and his wife divided their time between winters in Oslo, and summers along the coast at Lillesand, and to visits with children and grandchildren. Perhaps his last public appearance occurred during Charles Kuralt's television tribute to the heavy water saboteurs during the 1994 Winter Olympics at Lillehammer, Norway. He was taken ill soon after, and died on March 8, 1994.

Al Hubbs

Some actors were born in a trunk. Al Hubbs was born in the caboose of the Canadian National Railway near the city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. That makes him a railroad brat and he has been traveling ever since. Somewhere along the way he was introduced to drama by one of his teachers and he was hooked. High school plays in Toronto, local talent nights, amateur theater and stage productions became his consuming passion. He gave up the security of a steady job to pursue a life long desire of becomming a night club comedian. With a wife and seven months old baby, he moved to the City of Detroit to follow that dream. All it took was seven years, but he soon opened show for people like Tony Bennett, or Lena Horne and then spent ten years traveling the U.S. and Canada with singer Al Martino. From comedy, the step to film and television was a very short one. During the next twenty-five years his career expanded to include film and TV commercial work in Toronto, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. Relocating to Orlando in 1985 he began writing scripts for the University of Central Florida, local video production companies, and teaching the craft of film acting. Joining the Florida Motion Picture & Television Association he rose through the ranks to be Chapter President and finally Florida State President.

A SAG actor since 1971, he served nine years as Detroit Branch President, three years on the Hollywood Board and the last eighteen years as a trustee to the SAG Pension and Health Plans out of Burbank, California. Al still works as a comedy speaker at corporate banquets and conventions, as a film and television actor in Orlando and Miami, and continues to teach. His professional career spans forty years and shows no sign of slowing down.

Charles Belk

Charles Belk, a graduate of Hillside High School in Durham, North Carolina, completed his BS degree in Electrical Engineering at the University of Southern California and received an MBA from Indiana University and a Executive Management Certificate from Harvard University School of Business.

He is President and Chief Branding Officer of Charles Belk Entertainment, a Los Angeles based, brand awareness, digital marketing and consulting agency, and Producer at I Will Make You A Star Productions. His two decades of diverse Marketing Communications experience allows him to deploy unique, integrated, brand awareness campaigns that engage, entice and ensure measurable results. His company provides services to up-and-coming comedic actors, non-profit organizations, independent filmmakers and their indie films.

Diverse in his endeavors, Charles Belk ventured further into the entertainment industry by directing and producing two spec television comedy pilots for consideration by Comedy Central. His first feature film as a producer ("The Greatest Song") was released on DVD in August, 2009. With his second feature film ("Douglass U"), slated for a theatrical release, he has strongly set his sights on positively impacting the film and television industry.

A prolific speaker, Charles Belk has lead more than 40 seminars and workshops on such topics as "Writing an effective resume," "Winning Interviewing Skills," "Networking: How to work a room," and "The African American Male: Mentoring Today's Black Youth." In addition to serving as the keynote speaker for the USC Center for Engineering Diversity's Awards Banquet, Charles frequently serves as the host or as a panelist for events in and around Los Angeles - including, moderator for several movie and television preview screening q&a sessions for the NAACP Hollywood Bureau ("I Will Follow", "Just Right", "Pariah", "Our Family Wedding", ABC's "Scandal"), host of the USC Black Alumni Association (BAA) Homecoming Festivities, a panelist for the San Diego Film Festival's "How to Build Your Brand", the Hollywood Black Film Festival's "Positioning Your Film for Success," the Downtown Film Festival - Los Angeles' "Low Cost Ways for Marketing Your Indie Film," the Pan African Film Festival's "Successful Festival Strategies: How to Get the Most Out of a Film Festival," and a panelist for the USC Annenberg School of Communications' Industry Night.

Committed to community service, Charles has served on the Board of Directors for the inaugural, Downtown Film Festival - Los Angeles, the University of Southern California BAA, the Silverlake Film Festival Board of Directors, and the Chaka Khan Foundation "I Believe" Gala Committee. While in Atlanta, he served on the boards of the Hughes Spaulding Childrens Hospital, House of Love for the Homeless, Georgia CASA, Jomandi Theater, United Way of Greater Atlanta Volunteer Initiate Program, Cobb County Transit Advisory. Prior to that, the Durham City / County Zoning Commission, and the Durham Country Transportation Commission.

An Adjunct Professor of Marketing & Advertising at Pierce College, he is authoring his first book, "The Benefits of Branding You!"

Henri Rousseau

Henri Rousseau (Le Douanier) was born on May 21, 1844, in Laval, Northern France. His father was a plumber. Young Rousseau finished the Lycee in Laval and started as a lawyer's clerk. From 1863-1868 he served in the French Army. From 1869-1893 Russeau worked in a toll booth on the edge of Paris, as a municipal toll collector. For that job he was called "Le Douanier." He never really was a customs officer, but a second-class clerk; he was never promoted on his job and basically collected a fee from farmers coming to Paris markets.

Rousseau began painting in his forties. In 1884 he obtained a permit to sketch in the national museums and spent many hours sketching classical art masterpieces in the Louvre. His job as a toll collector gave him little income, but much time to paint. He also earned some cash as a street musician. Rousseau was self-taught, although he admitted he had received some advice from established Academic artists, including that of Jean-Leon Gerome. Rousseau was inspired by the jungle, but he never was there. His sources of imagination were illustrated books and visits to the Zoo and Botanical Gardens in Paris. He also used images from a drawing book of his daughter. He could paint bananas growing upside-down and in a few paintings he grouped animals from different continents, that in reality could never have been seen together. It was the genuine feeling and high decorative quality of his paintings that brought him attention from other artists. Pablo Picasso saw a painting by Rousseau being sold on the street as a canvas to be painted over. Picasso bought Rousseau's paintings in recognition of his genius.

His child-like art was created in the Post-Impressionist period and was categorized as Naive or Primitive. From 1886 Rousseau exhibited every year at the Salon des Independants along with the works of Georges Seurat, Armand Guillaumin, Odilon Redon, Paul Signac, Paul Gauguin, and other Post-Impressionists. His greatest wish was to master an academic style, and he genuinely believed that his pictures were real and convincing. Rousseau himself was such a sincere and genuine person, that he interpreted even sarcastic remarks literally and took them as praise. His positive disposition helped him endure great poverty. His working class background was seen as his big drawback by many contemporary critics. Finally the innocence and charm of his works won him the admiration of the leading artists. In 1905 he exhibited his large jungle composition 'The Hungry Lion Throws Itself on the Antelope' along with Henri Matisse at the first showing of Les Fauves (The Wild Ones).

Rousseau had an influence on such artists as Pablo Picasso, Robert Delaunay, Wassily Kandinsky, Félix Vallotton, Paul Gauguin, and many others. In 1908 Pablo Picasso bought a few works from Rousseau and gave a banquet at his studio in Rousseau's honor. At the banquet Rousseu was praised by Guillaume Apollinaire, Robert Delaunay, Max Jacob and by other artists in a manner, which was half-serious, half-burlesque. Rousseau sincerely believed in the serious half, and later told Picasso: "There are only two real artists in the world, you in "Egyptian style" and I am in "Classical." That's how different and naive was the world of Rousseau, whose genuine views impressed Pablo Picasso as much as his works. During 1909 and 1910 many of Rousseau's paintings were acquired by the dealers Ambroise Vollard and Joseph Brummer. Rousseau's paintings were shown posthumously in 1911, in a retrospective exhibition at the Salon des Independants. Rousseau's works were chosen by Wassily Kandinsky for the first exhibitions of Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) in 1911 and 1912 that toured Germany. The surrealist movement later considered Rousseau as one of their forerunners.

Henri Rousseau died on September 2, 1910, in Paris, and was laid to rest in the Cimetiere de Bagneux, in Paris, France.

Guillaume Apollinaire wrote the epitaph on Rousseau's tombstone:

We salute you Gentile Rousseau you can hear us

Delaunay his wife Monsier Queval and myself

Let our luggage pass duty free through the gates of heaven

We will bring you brushes paints and canvas

That you may spend your sacred leisure in the light of truth

Painting as you once did my portrait

Facing the stars

Jovita Trujillo

Jovita Trujillo is an outgoing and educated actress as well as a self proclaimed comedian. She moved to Los Angeles in September 2014 to pursue acting and immediately started getting auditions through self submissions. After only one month she was the lead in a two short films. Then, the lead in a viral video for film student Ken Kawada and The National Youth Foster Institute. In 2015, she landed the principle role in a sizzle reel for DirectTv Yaveo, played "the Sexy Friend" in a Blood Relatives episode for Investigation Discovery and has a feature film in production.

After completing her first short film, Jovita made the decision to join an acting class with actor Sal Landi and her resume and confidence began to grow. She has been doing scene study and training with him for 8 months where shes had her most challenging roles like a mentally retarded friend on a date, and a victim of incestuous sexual abuse. Jovita then decided to audition and join a long form improv sketch troupe at the Neon Venus art theater in Hollywood that rehearses weekly. She has been with them for over 7 months, playing in over 10 shows

Before her acting career, Jovita Trujillo graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara where she graduated with a B.A in Sociology, focusing mainly on race, environmental, feminist and gender inequalities. She's always striven to push herself past gender or social expectations moving from holding multiple records at her high school for track and field, to wrestling on the male wrestling team in high school, playing college rugby at UCSB and probably most harrowing, growing up with three older brothers. Shes always loved being the center of attention and did 6 years of Mexican Folkloric dancing taught by her mother, performing all around California. She was the commissioner of pep and athletics at her high school where she planned, organized, and hosted rallies and banquets for hundreds of her peers, and was in the school marching band. Her drive and devotion to equality and social change really solidified when she was 15 in 2008 with the passing of her mother, Elia who exemplified the kind of strength, compassion, and kindness that Jovita realized the entire world is in huge need of. The personal hardships shes dealt with is what makes her the charismatic, daring, and confident actress that she is.

Michael Krebs

Michael Krebs has portrayed Lincoln for various occasions throughout the United States since 1994. As producer of With Lincoln Productions, an artist ensemble, Krebs appeared in President Lincoln's Inauguration Re-enactment in Washington DC for inaugural swearing-in ceremony at the Capitol and banquet at Willard Hotel, also the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum opening in Springfield, Illinois, and their 2009 Bicentennial week, the Hoover Presidential Library, Gerald Ford Museum, Gettysburg, New Salem Historic Site, and educational programs to hundreds of schools throughout the U.S. Working at Chicago Historical Society from 1996-2005, Krebs appeared weekly in the Voices From History Program, portraying President Lincoln in the highly successful exhibits "The Last Best Hope of Earth: Abraham Lincoln and the Promise of America" and "The American Presidency: A Glorious Burden," also with their Distance Learning Center in opening Wet with Blood, an examination of Lincoln's assassination archives. He participated with Library of Congress on Mr. Lincoln's Virtual Library. As a guest speaker at Carl Sandburg College, he was part of President Clinton's address in January of 1995. Prior, he portrayed candidate Lincoln in the 1994 C-Span live broadcast re-enactment of the Lincoln-Douglas Galesburg Debate held at Knox College. Appearing as Lincoln in The History Channel's _Conspiracy?: Season 1, Episode 8 The Assassination of Abraham Lincoln (28 Nov. 2004) (TV)_, in Hatchett Books Group's Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, invited by Mexican Federal Government to participate in its Sesquicentennial of Cinco de Mayo commemoration in Puebla, Mexico 2012. Most recently cast as President Lincoln in Field of Lost Shoes. Like Mr. Lincoln, Michael stands 6'4" without his boots.

Kendal Murray

Kendal Murray of El Paso, TX is an entertainer and model. He has experience with runway modeling as well as theatrical productions. He has uncanny improvisational skills and is a delight to work with.

Kendal began entertaining at the age of five, when he was picked for a part with the traveling Missoula Children's Theatre. After several seasons with them, Kendal began to pursue modeling as well. He has modeled clothing for such names as Harley Davidson and Gap Kids on the runway. He recently wrapped up production of the familiar favorite Schoolhouse Rock.

While performing gives Kendal pleasure, "giving back" gives him more. Kendal's training as a Cub Scout has enhanced this God given trait in him. Kendal has been a champion of civic responsibility since before he could read. Perhaps that is why it is an innate part of his character. Kendal works tirelessly with one of the local homeless shelters by taking charge of such initiatives as food and clothing collection, wrapping and donation of Christmas toys for the shelter and even organizing Christmas caroling and photos with Santa for the shelter's families. He is heavily involved in goodwill activities of his mother's Rotary Club, as well as initiatives that benefit Soldiers and veterans. Organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving and Relay for Life benefit from Kendal's service. Kendal has been awarded the Commander's Award for Public Service for contributing in excess of 1,000 hours of service to his community. Additionally, his family was selected as the Volunteer Military Family of the year in 2009.

An aspiring pilot, Kendal realizes just how much lessons can cost and that every child cannot afford them. That is why he is an avid proponent for the Young Eagle's Program. This is a national program that introduces children to aviation and offers free experience and instruction to children who may otherwise not be able to afford this. He often "recruits" children for this activity. Kendal is also keenly aware of the need for education. He has volunteered for several years to assist Phi Beta Sigma Inc.'s chapter in his area with their annual Scholarship Banquet, as well as their community improvement initiatives. He was also instrumental in setting up the Erudite Entrepreneur Competition which provides scholarship funds to participants.

Olaf Krätke

Olaf Krätke was the youngest of three children. His father (actor) and mother (actress) worked at the Dortmunder Schauspielhaus. His career as actor began modestly in a small role in the play "Pinocchio" at the Dortmunder Schauspielhaus in 1965. He joined the drama program of his father and one of his colleagues.

Krätke grew up in Dortmund and went then to Bavaria, when his father retired from stage and after the death of his mother.

The very intensive private drama program ended with the death of his father in 1984. His first professional stage appearance was as police Inspector in the 1979 independent production "H - Ein Fixer gerät in die Mühlen der Justiz".

Between 1976 and 1979 he done a training as professional photographer, as his father wished.

His film career began with the main role as "The stiff man" in the surrealistic short "The Banquet" in 1983, which he also directed. Between 1983 and 1985 he directed three shorts, one feature film and two full length documentaries for a British film production company.

Till 2003 he appeared only on stage. In 2004 Krätke returned back on television in some doc-dramas and an episode of the ZDF series "Wilsberg - Schuld und Sühne" and also on screen in the feature films "Streetwise" and "Adam Meets Eve". After some small roles in series like "Freunde für immer" (directed by Sönke Wortmann), he got his first main role in 2005 as Dr. Klaus Bernreiter in the thriller "Rollentausch".

Scince than he become more and more popular and in several feature films like "Blutsbande", "GG 19", "Er schon wieder" and "Zimmer im Spiegel" (with Konstantin Wecker) and on television in successful series like "Um Himmels Willen" as Dr. Paul Hofer, or "Salvator Singspiel am Nockherberg" ("Trauminsel Nockherberg" 2006, "Staatszirkus Nockherberg" 2007) and the tv - comedy "Gwendolyn" (Bayerisches Fernsehen).

In 2006 he gave his debut in his first international feature film production "Schlimmer geht's nimmer", a comedy which was shoot in Austria (Styria) and Trieste (Italy). On September 2007 he played the role of Dr. Schmidt, the head of the medical institute IXAM, in the Hollywood production "Testing Life", which was directed by Carolin von Petzholdt.

Tara Wilkinson

Tara has been a Beijing resident since 2007.

Tara has spent the last couple of years collaborating on feature films with producer, Melanie Ansley; has had two feature screenplays optioned and was commissioned to write a pilot for a Chinese children's television series. Tara also collaborated with China Policy on a project relating to the business side of Chinese Film, and regularly presents information on this topic to foreign companies and individuals involved in the film industry.

In 2010, Tara worked for Lu Chuan, who has been described as China's Spielberg. During this time she assisted with company strategy, worked on his film 'The King's Banquet', the American release of 'City of Life and Death' (Nanjing Nanjing) and a documentary about the making of 'City of Life and Death'.

With screenwriters Martin Burke and Ivo Razza, Tara is a founding member of 'The After Party', an online professional screenwriting group, whose members live in America, Canada, China and Australia.

Tara completed the UCLA's professional screenwriting program and has taken advanced professional courses, including Paul Chitlik's screenplay rewrite course. She has also studied under Corey Mandell.

When Tara lived in Australia she received a New Writer's grant from the NSW Film and Television Office. She also worked at the Office of Film and Literature Classification as a policy officer and secretary of the Review Board.

Mackenzie English

Mackenzie was born and raised in a small town in New Jersey, where she began acting at age 5. Appearing on the back of Quaker Oatmeal and Banquet Dinner boxes, Mackenzie was busy being the "All-American girl-next-door". She has also worked with many well-known actors in several appearances on Saturday Night Live, being Kristen Stewart's stunt double in Panic Room, and featured in Riding In Cars With Boys and Double Parked. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Monmouth University in 2009, majored in Psychology, made the Dean's List two semesters in a row, and was initiated in the Psi Chi and National Scholars' Honors Societies. She is trained in stunt work, falls, wire work, stunt jet ski driving, and has years of experience handling, shooting, and loading fire arms (hand guns and rifles). She lives in California and is pursuing graduate studies in Clinical Therapy/Counseling while pursuing her busy acting career.

Alex Bertuchi

Actor Alex Bertuchi was born in Epsom, Surrey UK, to Francisco Bertuchi a Royal Green Jacket, in the British Army & Jessica Fernandez an Assistant Royalties Manager at Beggars Banquet/XL records. He has one younger brother Josh Fernandez. Alex was educated at Thomas More Catholic School in Purley, Surrey UK. Throughout his school years Alex appeared in school productions. It wasn't until Alex met actor/Writer/Producer Jody Medland, that he actually started working on professional Acting Jobs. Jody asked Alex if he wanted to be an extra on a commercial he was putting together, of course Alex being desperate to do his first acting job Accepted. Since then Jody gave Alex the acting bug. Since 2008 Alex has done various commercials for MTV, Comedy Central & Flip Video Camera. Alex landed himself an extra role on SHANK Directed by(MO ALI). He played a drug dealer in a crucial scene in the film. In 2014 Alex signed up to Ray Knight Casting to start working as a supporting Artist. Since then he has been on Jekyll & Hyde (ITV) starring Richard E Grant and Tom Bateman, & Mr Selfridge (ITV) starring Jeremy Piven. Alex is currently seeking representation so he can begin Main Cast acting and move on from Supporting Artist/Extra Roles. Alex Attended John Robert Powers Acting School in London and that is where he learned to be a professional actor, even though he says it was something that came to him naturally as a young boy. He was always told by his mother that he would be an Actor.

Kenneth Moraleda

Of Filipino descent Kenneth Moraleda was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA and has lived in Seattle, The Philippines, Australia and is now based in Sydney and LA. Kenneth trained at Australian Theater for Young People (ATYP) before being accepted into the prestigious National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) graduating with a Bachelor of Acting in 1995.

Kenneth's first lead in a feature film is the role of Arun in Lucky Miles directed by Michael James Rowland. Other film roles include Monsod in Miramax's The Great Raid directed by John Dahl and Tony in the short film Sweet and Sour.

Numerous television credits include playing Tim Young in the SBS series Bondi Banquet, Michael Lee in City Life for South Pacific Pictures and appearances on Water Rats, Wildside, White Collar Blue, Comedy Inc. and Playhouse Disney.

Notable theatre credits include creating the role of Roger Chan in Nick Enright's A Man With Five Children for the Sydney Theatre Company directed by George Ogilvie and most recently playing Banzai in the Australian/Asian Tour of Disney's The Lion King directed by Julie Taymor.

Billy Wild

Billy Wild is a Northwest native, born and raised in Portland, Oregon. He now resides in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angles Ca.

Billy has been involved in the entertainment industry on and off for over 20 years. He started out in front of the camera in his early twenties doing small parts in television and film. From 2004 to 2008, he wrote and performed a successful stand-up comedy act. He also produced and hosted a number of comedy and talent shows including the very successful Dirty Tuesday Naughty Talent Contest in Portland.

In 2009 Billy wanted to return to film, this time behind the camera. He expanded his working mediums to video and film by returning to school and focusing on script writing, directing, and producing. Billy earned an Associates of Arts and Sciences degree in Digital Media Communications. He was awarded honors at the 2011 Clackamas Student Film Festival and was an honored guest at the 2010 Bounty of Oregon Governor's Banquet for his work in the production of the short film Luscious Behind the Scenes.

Billy has written, produced and directed three short films, including Don't Cry. He has also worked as a producer, director, editor, camera operator, and jib operator in a number of other productions. Most recently, Billy worked with filmmaker Andy Mingo as an associate producer and first assistant director for Romance, a short film adapted from a story by Fight Club author, Chuck Palahniuk.

Wherever Billy Wild works, he brings with him creativity, experience, and a professional attitude that makes him a valuable asset to any production.

James J. Wilson

Born James John Wilson, August 22, 1968, youngest of three siblings (Cindi and Ron) His parents Ronald George Wilson and Elaine Anita Wilson (nee Foisy) raised James in Scarborough Ontario until the age of 16. James then went on to reside in Durham Region until the age of 29 when he moved to Kitchener Ontario.

James has work as a Chef for over 20 years specializing in haute cuisine and catering to large scale banquets. He always aspired to be an actor, and in many people's eye's he always was a character, even though James waited until his 40's to enter in to the acting arena. His passions for the arts also lead James into martial arts training where he studies Shaolin Kung-fu under Sigung Dave Hacket in Kitchener Ontario.

He met his agent and mentor, Donna Schmidt-Kirk, in 2013 and became an actor for Expressions by DSK. James has earned principle roles in TV docu-series such as Lawmen, See No Evil, Motives and Murder, Paranormal Survivor and other small film productions.


Errol M Wright hails from Essex County New Jersey. As a child, he always had a love for film. At times he would emulate the characters on the screen and put his own touch to it. "Watching a movie to me was like putting a puzzle together, just when you thought it fit, a new image arose". As a boy, he would create numerous short stories. Some in which were homework projects for his English class. His love for film and ambition to become an actor elevated from watching films such as "Devil in a blue dress", "Heat", and "Pulp Fiction" to name a few.

In his late teens he moved to Atlanta, GA. This was a fresh new city on the rise. He worked as a full time banquet server and part time as an usher at the local movie theater. In between he would audition for almost any gigs, which were mostly extras and non speaking roles in low budget films. It wasn't until the year of 2004 that he wrote his first full script. He ended up selling it to a student at the University in the area. From then on he would cultivate his time to his writings.

In 2008 he changed careers to become an Over the road truck driver. Now with a wife and child, responsibility was knocking at the front door. Acting had to take a back seat but writing was still his driving force. In 2010 he self published his first book titled "Memoirs of a Lyricist". Doing a 5 city tour and networking his new project. This again sparked the vision of his. This was creating and starring in films. He lived by the phrase "can't see the forest for the trees". He once again started to write short stories and in turn started to create his own projects, in which he produced and directed. Today he is the owner of Eternal Quest Productions where his goal is to create quality films that keep the audience on the edge of their seats. "The quest in life is eternal"

Anthony Terracciano

Wrote first stage-play in 1996 "A Life Times Three", Summerlin Theater Production

1996 Anthony meets Joseph Bernard (actor) Ice Station Zebra and Director of the Actor's Studio Los Angeles. They meet as Anthony is in the process of casting for "A Life Times Three". They become quick friends and collaborators on three different projects from the years 1996-2002.

2011 Anthony completes his Screenplay "The Relative Grift", currently working with Producers Jefferson Richard and Reginald LaFrance, shopped by Izzy Louis at the Kerwin Agency Los Angeles.

2011 Anthony makes a cameo appearance in the movie Argo, Directed by Ben Affleck. Anthony plays "The Waiter"(uncredited), in a scene with Ben Affleck in the banquet hall at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

2011-present Co-founder Antonio Racciano Productions


Hal Frazier

Hal was a teacher for nine years after receiving his Masters Degree in Music from Florida A & M University in Tallahassee, Florida. His musical career developed in the mid-60's when he signed with the Playboy Clubs International followed by a personal management contract with Don Adams, of the famous "Get Smart" and "Inspector Gadget" television series.

Appearances on "The Tonight Show" with Johnny Carson as well as the Mike Douglas, Merv Griffin, David Frost, and Ed Sullivan shows; appearing as a special guest-star for the Miss Universe Pageant and the Presidential Inaugural Banquet honoring President Richard Nixon; touring with Mr. Don Rickles; and recording two albums for VMC Records, "Hal Frazier" and "No Man Is An Island," are some of the highlights of Hal Frazier's career.

Hal's elder daughter, LaGaylia Frazier, a graduate of the University of Miami and a former member of the UM Chamber Singers, has followed in his footsteps with a flourishing singing career of her own and has now released her first CD, "LaGaylia Uncovered", which promises a bright addition to her career as a songwriter and lyricist.

In 2002, Warner Music UK Ltd. re-released Hal's "After Closing Time" on their "After Hours: Northern Soul Masters" compilation albums.

Hal is currently trying to fit some performances within the U.S. into his schedule of international and cruise ship appearances.

Dorothy Dietrich

Dorothy Dietrich is an American stage magician and escapologist, and the first and only woman to have performed the bullet catch in her mouth. She is also the first woman to perform a straitjacket escape while suspended hundreds of feet in the air from a burning rope as shown on a Home Box Office Special, The World's Greatest Escapes where she was introduced by movie star Tony Curtis. She is the first woman to gain prominence as a female escape artist since the days of Houdini, breaking the glass ceiling for women in the field of escapes and magic. The 2006 Columbia Encyclopedia included Dietrich among their "eight most noted magicians of the late 20th century", and entertainment writer Samantha Hart in her definitive book "The Hollywood Walk of Fame" called her a "world-class magician" and "one of the world's leading female magicians". Early on as a teenager she already was dubbed as "The First Lady of Magic." Dietrich, often called the female Houdini, has duplicated many of Houdini's original escapes, and has gone one step further by doing the Jinxed Bullet Catch Stunt - the one that Houdini backed away from.

Dorothy Dietrich is a native of Erie, Pennsylvania. In a six-page article about the history of women in magic in the women's magazine, Bust, which contained only two full-page pictures, one of Adelaide Herrmann and the other of Dietrich. At the age of 13, she saved enough money as a young teen to hitch a ride with a girlfriend's older brother to New York and ran away from her abusive father, her first true escape act.

Among the books she read as a child was a biography of Houdini, who became a childhood idol, a fact that later influenced her desire to perform escapes.

Early on, she learned her craft mostly from books. In New York, she auditioned for Westchester Department of Parks from an ad in a show business newspaper and was booked on the spot for a full summer of work, was recommended to the school district for the winter months, and re-booked the following summer for an increase in dates and price. Around this same time she earned her performing chops working a dime museum "grind show" Ten-in-One operation in hectic Times Square run by legendary mouse pitchman Tommy Laird with such performers as Earl "Presto" Johnson, Lou Lancaster, Chris Capehart, Dick Brooks and others. Showcasing for the Parent Assembly of the Society of American Magicians at about the same time, well-known magicians Russell Swann and Walter B. Gibson, captivated by her performance style, took her under their wing. Dietrich also studied with "Coney Island Fakir" Al Flosso, a regular performer on the Ed Sullivan television show, Jack London (for the bullet catch) and Lou Lancaster with the Milk Can and the Straitjacket escape, as well as slight of hand magic. The recognition gradually put Dorothy Dietrich and her magic into resort hotels, nightclubs, school and college auditoriums, trade shows. She became a favorite of several New York booking agents.

She developed what is known as a flash act that included doves, a rabbit, a duck and two poodles. Early on she was considered a "leading dove worker". She also developed several routines few women had ever attempted. Sawing men in half, escaping from a straitjacket, sleight of hand with coins via the Misers Dream, The Bullet Catch, and levitating audience members. It is her goal to level the playing field between men and women in the field of magic, and to innovate and break barriers where no women, and in some cases no men have gone. Until she broke many of these barriers women were not allowed full membership in such organizations as The Society of American Magicians and London's Magic Circle, which early on she tried to join. She has pioneered and paved the way for women in the field today.

Dietrich has created special shows for such companies as Maidenform, Pooltrol, Yago Sangria, Manhattan Shirts, as well as fashion and cosmetic companies. She is a regular performer for trade and industrial events.

On television, Dorothy Dietrich won attention as a woman who, instead of allowing herself to be sawed in half, reversed the traditional illusion and severed into two parts the male hosts of talk shows and network specials. As word got around she was called to do a Bill Cosby special while still in her early teens, but with the help of her sophisticated style and makeup she passed as an adult and was able to work night clubs and banquets in leading hotels and venues. Cosby was so impressed that he recommended her to several agents. At this same time she performed with Loretta Lynn, Dick Van Patten and Tony Randall.

Dietrich was co-editor, contributor and publisher of Hocus Pocus Magazine along with magician/mentalist Dick Brooks. In addition to escapes and large scale stunts Dietrich has performed illusions with live animals such as doves, rabbits, poodles and ducks. She is also known for sawing men in half. She also does an updated version of the classic Miser's Dream, plucking coins from the air, nose, ears and pockets of a youngster from the audience. She is also known for levitating volunteers from the audience.

Dietrich was a founder along with Dick Brooks of New York's Magic Towne House, a popular magic show spot in New York City, which was the longest running magic show in New York City history. Always interested in magic history and innovation, Dorothy Dietrich learned that opening a magic show spot in New York City was a dream of legendary magicians Houdini, Thurston, David Copperfield and Doug Henning.

At the same time she wanted a place where well-known performers could be seen, as well as to help to develop future generations of magicians. Along with partner Dick Brooks she accomplished this goal with The Magic Towne House. Some of the magicians who got their early start at The Magic Towne House include Eric DeCamps, Imam, Jeff McBride, Otto and George, Johnny Ace Palmer, Joseph Pepitone, Joe Raven, David Regal, Rocco Silano, Peter Samelson, Meir Yedid and others. Established performers of the era also performed with them, including Bobby Baxter, Harry Blackstone, Jr., Milbourne Christopher, Daryl, Fantasio, Frank Garcia, Walter B. Gibson, Wesley James, Presto Earl Johnson, Lou Lancaster, Jack London, Bill McQueen, Max Maven (Phil Goldstein), Ben Robinson, James Randi, David Roth, George Schindler, Slydini and others.

Imam would, after several years, break away and form his own competing club downtown in Greenwich Village. Brooks and Dietrich searched out Brother Theodore, whose career had waned, and helped to bring him back to prominence that led to his appearing on The Tom Snyder Tomorrow Show and a series of TV and movie appearances. Upon the closing of the Magic Towne House, Michael Chaut and Peter Samuelson would later develop "Monday Night Magic" along with Frank Brents, Todd Robbins, and Jamy Ian Swiss, which still runs successfully in New York City.

In 2008, Bust Magazine reported about Dietrich's 1988 attempt to catch a bullet in a metal cup in her mouth. She performed it at Donald Trump's Resorts International's 10th anniversary in Atlantic City, New Jersey. It was televised on a special called, Just For The Record, The Best Of Everything. This came about after catching a .22 caliber bullet for the yearly convention of the International Brotherhood of Magicians in Pittsburgh. It was shown on Network TV's Evening Magazine, and on The New You Asked For It with Rich Little as host. She performed it again in Canada on a TV show called Autobus du Canada for the highest amount ever paid a magician on Canadian television. She is the first and only female to successfully complete the bullet catch in the mouth. It was done under test conditions with the bullets bought by a committee. Brought in under guard, an independent marksman picked and fired the bullet. One of two chosen bullets was fired into a concrete backstop and the second was fired at Dorothy. Dietrich challenged anyone who could prove that the bullet did not leave from the gun by offering a $10,000 reward. Feature stories and articles about her have appeared in major publications such as the New York Times and TV Guide.

On exhibit for many years at the Houdini Magical Hall of Fame in Niagara Falls, Canada, until it burned down, was a large two-panel display of Dorothy Dietrich and her accomplishments as "The Female Houdini". A similar display is now shown at Scranton's Houdini Museum.

For many years she held the Houdini Seances in New York as a tribute to the legendary magician, continuing a tradition started by Houdini's wife who asked friend and writer Walter B. Gibson to carry on the legacy. Even though Bess gave up the séances herself, she asked Walter B. Gibson to carry on the October 31 tradition. For many years, Gibson, along with several other magicians including Milbourne Christopher, held the séances at the Magic Towne House in New York City. Before Gibson died he asked Dietrich to carry on the tradition, Walter was a confidant and biographer of Houdini and also wrote the famous Shadow Series. Dietrich continues the séances at The Houdini Museum in Scranton, Pennsylvania, each Halloween, the day Houdini died. The séances have been shown on such shows as TV Lands Myths and Legends, Biography's Dead Famous-Houdini and Exploring the Unknown. The séances at the Houdini Museum in Scranton are often attended by The Houdini Family who are the closest living relatives of Bess Houdini, making this the closest event connected back to the original séances that Bess Houdini held.

When not traveling, Dietrich heads up to The Houdini Museum, the only building in the world dedicated to Houdini, where she performs on a regular basis when in town. She has been featured on many television shows and channels including CBC, BBC, CBC, NBC, ABC, Travel Channel, Syfi, and Biography Channel, TV Land, etc. She is also a featured performer at the museum's hit show eight years running Psychic Theater's "Haunted! Mysteries & THE Beyond!" along with Paranormalist Dick Brooks. It is the longest running séance presentation in history.

Dietrich also crusades against those who falsely claim to speak to dead relatives of vulnerable grieving citizens. Early on, Dorothy Dietrich realized that there were those who would use magic and various deceptive arts to manipulate and even cheat people out of money. So following in the footsteps of famous debunkers who came before her such as Houdini, Milbourne Christopher and James Randi, she takes on such a role where possible. She has a $10,000.00 reward for anyone who says they can contact the spirit of Houdini. One who tried recently was Canadian television "medium" Kim Dennis who had contacted the Houdini family claiming she was getting messages from Houdini.

Dietrich also sends out the World's only continuous traveling Houdini exhibit. Besides featuring it as part of her many shows, it has also traveled to corporations, banks, and casinos.

On September 27, 2011 a group she formed, that came to be known in the media as The Houdini Commandos, secretly replaced the statuary bust at Houdini's grave site that has been missing due to vandalism for 36 years. This was reported in a half-page story worldwide in the New York Times on October 24, 2011. Her world famous attraction Scranton's Houdini Museum that she runs with mystery entertainer Dick Brooks, has been asked by both the family of Houdini and the management of the cemetery to take over the upkeep of the grave that has been in disarray for many years due to neglect. She recently petitioned the Society of American Magicians to talk over the responsibility, which gratefully in November 2013 the voted unanimously to take over. Dietrich stated "I will not live forever, but The Society of Americans will."

Jesse Brad Billauer

On February 24th, 1979, Jesse Billauer was born at the Natural Childbirth Institute in Culver City, California. This facility was a birthing center, not a traditional hospital, with midwives making deliveries, not doctors. Perhaps this was the reason that this little boy would go on to live a non-traditional life as well.

For as we look back on the first 24 years of the life and times of Jesse and try to create a vision of what the future holds, we see a unique story of a person with a passion for life, who is forced to overcome some serious obstacles and yet comes through with an even greater passion.

As a youth, Jesse Billauer was blessed with the desire and coordination to excel at a wide range of sports in his hometown of Pacific Palisades. He developed a reputation as a star athlete in sports like baseball, soccer, and floor hockey. In baseball and soccer he played up to the high school level until surfing became his true life passion. In floor hockey he had one season where he was known as "Wayne Gretzky" for his domination of the league's titles and needed a shopping cart to carry away all the trophies he received at the season ending awards banquet. In his spare time, Jesse spent some time snowboarding, water/snow skiing, and playing ice hockey.

With time, he developed a fascination for the water. It seemed to hold a special place in his psyche. It soothed and relaxed him. It was his source of strength. It was where he wanted to be when he wanted to be alone, to contemplate, to problem solve.

Jesse started surfing around the age of nine. It was his brother Josh and friend John Hearne (Brendan Hearne's father) who first exposed him to what the ocean had to offer. It was love at first site. Before long, it became his passion at the expense of almost all other activities. Originally they surfed only Topanga, but with time could be found anywhere up and down the coast. His favorite spots included Point Mugu Military Base, Zuma, and Supertubes.

In those early days, his love affair with the ocean extended his activities to fishing as well. He and his family took special fishing trips to Cabo San Lucas where deep sea fishing became a second passion of his. The first trip, he caught his first marlin, a catch more than twice his size. This new passion became so intense that he took a job as a deckhand on the "Happy Man" fishing charter out of Marina del Rey. The deal was: free fishing all day, but Jesse had to do all the dirty work: cleaning the fish, baiting people's hooks, untangling "crow's nests," and at the end of the day, swabbing the deck! Although he came home stinking of fish, he always had the biggest smile on his face as be took his "catch of the day" and prepared his own dinner.

Jean-Marie Besset

Born in Carcassonne, Jean-Marie Besset spent his childhood in the nearby small town of Limoux, in Southwest France, until his Baccalaureat (1977). With degrees in business (ESSEC, 1981) and political sciences (IEP Paris, 1984), he divided for twelve years his time between Paris and New York. In 1999-2000, he returned to France to become the artistic director of the Théâtre de l'Atelier, a land-marked Paris theatre acquired by Laura Pels. Since 2000, in partnership with producer/director Gilbert Désveaux, he has formed the company BCDV theater to initiate and develop projects (among which, a summer theatre festival, NAVA -New Authors in the Aude Valley.)In 2010-2013, the duo ran the National Theatre (CDN) in Montpellier.

His plays include Villa Luco, The Function, What You Get And What You Expect (NYTW premiere 2000), The Best Of Schools (Grande Ecole), A Commentary On Love, Rue de Babylone, The Greeks, Perthus, The Girl On The Train, I Don't Want To Marry, The Banquet At Auteuil.

He's also the French translator of playwrights Edward Albee, Tennessee Williams, Will Eno, Alan Bennett, Michael Frayn, Tom Stoppard.

Several of his plays or adaptations have been made into movies: Grande Ecole (Dir. Robert Salis, 2004), The Girl On The Train (André Téchiné, 2008), Life Of Riley (Alain Resnais, 2014).

Janice Hartmann

Janice's father was a LCA minister and attending the seminary when she was born. After completing the seminary, the family moved about every two years to a new start-up church.

It wasn't until Janice was nine, that the family put down roots for five years, in the small town of Nachusa, IL outside Dixon, Illinois. It was at this time Janice discovered a love for performing. And, although, nicknamed "dummy' during her grade school year's, because she was slow in studies due to dyslexia - she didn't let that get her down! Janice wrote plays and enlisted the small town talent, of Nachusa, IL to put on a backyard circus for the five years they resided there. Janice managed every detail of the circus, from promoting to performances, to games and refreshments. The community came together to have fun, and raise money for Charity, with each passing year drawing a larger audience!

Janice grew up admiring Shari Lewis, so it was no surprise, that she became a Professional Ventriloquist by age 12. Finally, she could look at all those who coined her, 'dummy' and say, "I'm no dummy, but I get paid to work with them!"

Janice has entertained audiences in a wide variety of venue's including; malls, banquets, cooperate events, schools, hospitals, and worked as an Emcee at various talent events.

Janice puts her heart & soul in everything she does, whether it be writing a new routine, taking on a role in television and movies, to volunteering with the elderly/Hospice care, or helping a teenager through difficult circumstances.

Joe C. Farr III

Joe Farr was born in Washington, District of Columbia and moved to Raleigh, North Carolina when he was two. He attended Duke University where he was a four-year basketball team manager for Mike Krzyzewski from 1995-98. He was a head manager for Duke's 32-4 Elite Eight team as a senior. Farr graduated with a BA in Economics and a minor in Chemistry.

Upon graduation, Farr went on to serve as an ACC Futures Intern for the Atlantic Coast Conference and Home Team Sports. In this capacity, he supervised the operations of the ACC Men's & Women's Cross Country and the ACC Men's and Women's Soccer Tournaments and banquets. After a ten-month stint in the ACC Futures Internship, Farr was called up to the Worldwide Leader in Sports in Bristol, Connecticut. He joined ESPN in 1999 where he functioned first as a Program Associate and later as a Strategic Program Planner. In these roles, he acted as the program director for Black History Month, Track & Field, Swimming & Diving, and Cycling. He negotiated the contracts for the Boston Marathon, USA Track & Field package, and the World Swimming & Diving Championships and worked as the Program Planner for college basketball, college football, and NCAA Championships.

ESPN also provided Farr with his first taste of production. Farr was the executive producer on four of ESPN's Black History Month programs: Seasons of Change: The African American Athlete, Seasons of Change: The African American Athlete, Relatively Speaking: George Foreman, and Relatively Speaking: Joe Dumars. The 2002 installment of Seasons of Change won the NAMIC Vision Award for Best News/Informational Program.

After over four years at ESPN, Farr left to attend the Yale School of Management where he was selected as a Yale MBA Scholar. While at Yale, he was co-President of the Black Business Alliance and he created, organized, and produced the SOM Night Live sketch comedy program (inspired by Saturday Night Live). He earned his MBA in 2005 with a dual concentration in Marketing and Leadership. He is now running his own production company, Trey Mojo Productions.

Sherry Teleky Waple

Sherry developed a love for films at a very early age. As this love continued to grow, she decided to jump into the industry and started the Independent Film Company Golden Horse Production which was established in 2000. Sherry attended Hollywood Film Institute, New York, 2000 and received a Certificate of Completion as a certified Cinema Director, Line Producer, and a Producer's Diploma as a Feature Film Producer. She also attended Filmmaker's Central School of Cinema, Los Angeles, 2002 and received a Masters in the Arts and Sciences of Digital Cinema.

Sherry made her solo directorial debut with her short film "Poultry and Prejudice" which was filmed on location in her hometown and primarily at her grandparent's three story home. "Poultry and Prejudice" won the Audience Award at the 2004 Harrisburg ArtsFest. Her most recent film, "Obsession" starring Terence Knox, is currently making its way through the film circuit.

Sherry currently resides in Middletown, PA with her husband Frank. She is a legal secretary for a prestigious law firm by day, a pharmacy technician by night and and inspiring filmmaking in all her spare time. Some of her other hobbies include reading, writing, horseback riding, training horses and playing ice hockey. Sherry raised her own horse Tequilla Sunrise since she was nine months old and utilized her in Poultry and Prejudice. Tequilla is her pride and joy at eight years-old, along with Chloe'her one year-old Australian Shepherd, her nineteen year-old Torti cat Mickey and fourteen year-old Australian Shepherd Nikkita, whom both recently passed away.

Sherry's credits include: 1987-1988 Hershey Bears Hockey Club Biography (directed/produced/edited); Sherry Teleky Waple Autobiography (directed/produced/edited); short film "Radio Silence" (co-directed); short film "Obsession" (writer/producer/director); video banquet presentations for "Blue Raiders 2004-2005" and "Blue Raiders 2005-2006" director/producer/camera operator); "Land Rover: A Day Off Road" (camera operator); "Blue Raiders: Fury On Ice" (writer/director/producer/camera operator).

"My grandparents always told me that I could do anything if I put my mind to it." That is exactly what Sherry is doing now with the constant support of her family and friends.

Brendan Boyle

Brendan caught the acting bug early, playing the Baby Jesus in a poorly-attended Nativity Scene at Ashbourn CC. Undaunted, he went on to found the Butch Patrick Fan Club and was eventually honored to portray his idol's iconic character, "Eddie", in a St. Joseph's production of "A Very Munster's Musical". Brendan is not only an accomplished actor and singer, but dancer as well, having toured most of Montgomery County in a production of "Urban Cowboy". Brendan is a die-hard lifelong Eagles fan, whose memorabilia includes a Rodney Peete jersey and a napkin signed by John Sciarra, who was the keynote speaker at his Little League banquet. In his free time, Brendan enjoys burgers and beer and the amusing house wine.

Charles Norton

Charles Norton grew up in North Carolina and was very susceptible to colds, flu, etc. In the third grade he was sick in bed for the entire school year. The doctors told his parents that they would have to move to Florida for his health or construct a cottage at the beach to build him up, which they did at Atlantic Beach. By the time he was 9 years old his family had the cottage and he spent the summers swimming in the ocean and became a strong swimmer and rider of waves. He was the best on the beach and swam in all weather including storms.

When he was ten a boy took him sailing in a small sailboat. He fell in love with sailing immediately. The fact that you could utilize the wind to take you where you wanted to go was marvelous to him. He began sailing as crew in a racing scow the style of which dated back for centuries and the time of the Vikings. The old salts used hiking boards for ballast which they switched from side to side. No decks, about 22 feet long. They would sail in the ocean with 6 or 7 man crews and he'd be on the floor of the boat with a scooper bailing water over the side. The young man who owned the boat (which was fully equipped for racing), which utilized a storm jib, reefing, topsail, spinnaker and hiking boards was named Buzz Mitchell. The skipper was tough and he and his crew won most of their races against the old salts that had generations of experience. They demanded Norton get the water out which was hard work because the water poured over the gunnels without the obstruction that decks would have provided. It gave him great experience and an understanding of the ruthlessness of racing in heavy weather. But they supported him in learning and this was one of his lessons at a young age. Hard work under pressure with no let up. The point was to win and these were the sacrifices.

The next year he persuaded his father to buy him a 15 foot boat and spent the summer learning to sail by himself. He and his friends would turn the boat over in the middle of the sound and swim it to an island, turn it back up and start sailing again. His father realized how much he loved sailing and the following year had a Comet built for him which cost about $250 at the time. It was a miniature "Star", a sailboat known world wide, Charles rented a "Star" in Portofino years later and sailed around that area.

He and his friends quickly had a fleet of about 22 Comets. Initially one person was winning most of the races but during his boyhood illness he had become a tremendous reader and held on to this when he became well. He read a book called "The Aerodynamics of Sails" by Manifred Curry. To this day this book provides any sailor with an easy to understand explanation of why sails work. It elucidates the tools and knowledge needed to come out on top using tactics and strategy. He began to win all the races and set course records all over the Carolinas. And here he was only 11 years old!

When he was 15 he sailed his boat "The Popeye" 800 miles to New York and the Worlds Fair. The New York Herald Tribune says his arrival was at the Battery Pier A Thursday at 4 PM. They were featured on the cover of all the New York News Papers and the Christian Science Monitor on Friday August 2nd. It was remarked in the paper that not since Lindberg's historic flight across the Atlantic has there been such a hero's welcome in New York City. One person remarked that you might as well try to see the President. He was given the Key to New York City by the Mayor, a Trip around New York in the Mayor's Yacht with an escort and then the boat was put on view at the New York Worlds Fair in the Maritime Building with an escort around the fair and into all the exhibits through side doors. No waiting in line. This was 1940 and their was closed Circuit Television from the FAIR and he was on it. He was given many Honors for the sailing trip to New York. He was made a member of the Quiz Kids Hall of Fame and also Boy of the Month in "Youth of Today" and "Boys Life".

His competitors in races had accused his boat of not being regulation with more dead-rise in the bow than the other Comets. Years later he kept his boat at the Larchmont Yacht Club on Long Island Sound having been offered free berth because of all he had done for sailing. He worked in New York at CBS and because of his heavy schedule he raced in only one race week at Larchmont which is a 7 day race. Because of his job he could only race three days out of the seven and he took two first places and a second but he couldn't conceive that he could win anything overall so he didn't go to the banquet and found out later that he had indeed one a third place trophy as his time was that good on the three days he raced. Larchmont had his boat measured before the race and it conformed totally to the Comet measurements dispelling the earlier claims that it was not regulation.

He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1949 with a BA in English and Minors in Business and Dramatics. Membership in the Honors Society, "The Order of the Old Well", in recognition of High Attainment in Scholarship and Leadership was conferred on him at that time. He was captain of the University Boxing Team and won two Gold Medals in pole vaulting. He is a Navy Veteran having served during World War II and was stationed at Guantanamo air station in Cuba. He had made the highest qualifying grades for Air Corps training in his squadron and was made Assistant to the Duty Officer while awaiting call up for flight training. The war ended and he returned to Carolina.

He started in the mail-room at CBS in 1950 and was later accepted into the Directors Guild of America in 1952. He became Assistant to Robert Stevens, Producer and Director of "Suspense" and performed the jobs of script supervisor and stage manager as well. Essentially they did everything to prepare the show and on the day of the live shoot a crew and First Assistant Director were brought in. Robert Mulligan who had been Steven's assistant prior to Charlie was the First Assistant who came in. He went directly to Hollywood to Direct "To Kill a Mocking Bird" with Gregory Peck who won the Oscar for his performance. When Charlie went to work for CBS, he signed a contract that they would own anything he created while there so he left CBS to produce a pilot film based on four books by William B. Seabrook which he optioned. His technical advisor was Dr. J.B. Rhine of Duke University Head of the Department of Para Psychology and author of the acclaimed book "New World of the Mind". The Pilot Film Charles Produced Starred Franchot Tone, Darren McGavin, John Baragrey, Robert Middleton and Blanche Yurka. It was directed by Harold Young who had Directed "The Scarlett Pimpernell" with Merle Oberon and Leslie Howard. He directed 75 other films as well. Charles rejected a deal with CBS to produce the series because they wanted a different producer who was familiar with California production. They offered him the job of Assistant Producer. He turned it down at the advice of his attorney and never had another solid offer. The pilot is written up on the Internet and can be purchased on a DVD entitled, "Lights Out."

He returned to work at NBC as Staff Associate Director and Directed episodes for "Wide, Wide, World" and other shows. He left N.B.C. to form a Company with James Hammerstein, Son of Oscar. They had a screenplay written by Norman Brooks who had written "Fragile Fox", an acclaimed play on Broadway, which was made into the successful motion picture "Attack" by Robert Aldrich and starring Jack Palance and Eddie Albert.

Through Lillian Small their Agent, they made contact with David Miller, who was in New York Directing "Happy Anniversary" with David Niven and Mitze Gaynor. David wanted to direct the movie but first wished to supervise a rewrite of the Screenplay. Jim and I agreed that was a good idea and thought it would be cheaper to take the writer and his wife to California than pay per diem to David and have him stay in New York. Wrong, they should have done it by mail and then they would have had a paper trail. They refused an umbrella deal with Columbia which Lillian engineered. Another big mistake.

Money ran out and Norton headed back to North Carolina with his wife and two daughters and within 2 weeks landed a position as Director of Public Information at the Research Triangle Institute where he was given top security clearance and wrote news releases to the papers on projects that were government financed. RTI had an annual report done the year before by an Advertising Agency that he wanted to improve on. Charles was given the assignment and wrote and laid out a report style that is still being followed.

After this, he was asked by the Mayor of Durham to try to bring the School of Performing Arts to the Research Triangle. He brought Durham, Raleigh, Chapel Hill and Hillsboro together and made a pitch. Winston Salem out pledged us and won the Contract. Richard Adler, Sidney Blackman, Agnes DeMille and Mayor Grebarak then asked Charles to start a professional Equity Theater in Durham which he did with Buck Roberts. They cast in New York and had a successful season. In addition, Charles brought Wayne Rogers, a friend from California, to star in one of the plays. Also, he brought Rick Wyler to Star in "Streetcar" with Mary Jane Wells.

When Charles directed his first Television Show, he shot 15 5/8 pages the first day with 3 moves, totally startling everyone, and brought the entire show in 7 hours ahead of schedule. It turned out to be one of their best episodes. He directed a second episode "Bang,Bang,Bang" starring a monkey.

He directed "No Hard Feelings" in Africa, a picture which he also wrote and which contained 7 original songs by Jim Wetherly who wrote "Midnight Train to Georgia". Jimmy Haskell wrote the music. It was an action movie he had been inspired to write about rapes that were taking place on the U.C.L.A. campus when his daughter was arranging to go there. He wanted to alert the board of Governors to ways they could protect their Students and Secretaries.

The picture, which he brought in a week ahead of schedule, received two stars in "Movie Guide" when J. Lee Thompson's Film, "King Solomon's Mines", starring Richard Chamberlain, Sharon Stone and John Rhys-Davies received a "Turkey." For bringing it in a week ahead of schedule, the company gave him a free trip to the Sabi-Sabi Game reserve which was a tremendous thrill.

Charles had studied directing in University and with Lee Strasberg at the American Theatre Wing while working as an Associate Director at NBC. Charles trained many of the 2nd Assistant Director "Trainees" for the DGA and has lectured at several universities on film Production. He gave a three hour lecture at the Art Center College of Design that was very well received. His daughter graduated there in Illustration) and was just named teacher of the year at the "Pace Academy" in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Steve Rosenzweig

Steve Rosenzweig first came to prominence as a Production Designer when he worked with director Ang Lee on Academy Award nominated "The Wedding Banquet". He frequently collaborates with directors Steve Buscemi ("Tree's Lounge", "Animal Factory"), Hal Hartley ("Amateur", "Henry Fool") and Danny Leiner ("Layin' Low", "Harold and Kumar go to White Castle" & "HBO's "Flashback"). Rosenzweig's television projects include Fox's new drama series "The Jury", directed by Barry Levinson. His credits include countless TV commercials including the extremely popular BudLight/ Cedric the Entertainer campaign featured during the XXXV Superbowl. Along with his film projects, Rosenzweig works in the theater world, designing the sets and costumes for Hal Hartley's "Soon", which premiered at the 1998 Salzburg Opera Festival, and is currently working on the Belgian Christmas Musical "Santa", which makes it's American debut in the 2004 holiday season in New York City. Rosenzweig graduated from SUNY Purchase with a BFA, where he studied painting, printmaking and sculpture. After college, he worked in newpaper and magazine production, and as a studio assistant to the painter/ sculptor Red Grooms before embarking on his career in film.

Mel Danser

Singer - Bandleader - Illustrator/ Live action and animation storyboard and layout artist plus Advertising TV Art Direction. Mel has given thanks all his life to his mother, who with her foresight and common sense, took him away from grammar school early at the age of 15, so that she could get him apprenticed to an advertising agency art department and at the same time attend on a part time basis, St. Martin's School of Art.

Although he was a very shy lad at school where he was often bullied, getting out into the big commercial world gave him confidence and self respect and the incentive to join an am dram group, 'The Beaumont Operatic Society' where he could develop his other natural talent, singing.

His first appearance at 16 was as a member of the chorus in 'Annie Get Your Gun' and he went on to play 'Curly' the lead in 'Oklahoma' at the age of 20, at 'The Peoples Palace' theatre, in the Mile End Road. The BBC used to do live broadcasts from there in the good old radio days, e.g. 'Variety Bandbox' and 'Band Parade', featuring all the great big bands of that time. As a young boy Mel was a keen and constant member of the invited audience.

When one of the girls in the Beaumont group invited Mel to her wedding and persuaded the band-leader to ask Mel to sing a song for her, this resulted in that band-leader, Max Lewis, asking Mel to sing for him on a regular basis at functions and dances all over London.

At approximately the same time, Mel had been getting up to sing at a club opposite the am dram rehearsals, where sax and clarinet player Ronnie Findon, headed up a swing group consisting of Johnny Hemsworth on piano, Johnny Bromberg bass and Jimmy Kavanagh on drums.

The boys suggested that Mel should come along to Hornsey Town Hall on Saturday, where they played, in order for him to enter a singing contest being judged by their resident vocalist, Terry Parsons.

Mel won the contest and as a result was offered the position of boy singer with Harry Pitch and his big band, also resident at the venue. Hornsey Town Hall was a very popular dance venue in those days, where smartly dressed boys and girls would line up around the block in order to gain admission every Saturday night.

Mel learnt a great deal by working alongside all the professional musicians who regularly played at the venue and in particular, watching and listening to Terry Parsons, himself a very experienced performer, being that much older and having sung on radio in the far east where he was stationed in his national service days.

Within a couple of years a minor miracle occurred, when in spite of the fast emerging pop climate, Terry was discovered by Winifred Atwell and overnight his name was changed to Matt Munro and the rest is history.

Although Matt went on to achieve and deserve great acclaim, in those early days his diary was not always as full as it should have been and as a result he would make surprise visits to Hornsey Town Hall on Saturdays and toward the end of the evening he and Mel would sit side by side on stools centre stage and sing in segue, a chorus each of the current swingers from the American song book. This, Mel says, is one of those great memories he stores from those early days.

As Mel developed into a confident and professional performer, he was offered work which entailed much travelling and also resident positions away from home, but as his father had died suddenly at a young age when Mel was just 22, as an only child, he could not leave his mother, he was now the breadwinner and in any case he had developed a parallel situation in the creative world and by now he was earning a salary that far surpassed the weekly wage of a working musician. He worked for the Rank Organisation, designing for the rostrum camera, which held him in good stead later for his position as storyboard and layout artist for Hanna Barbera's TV cartoon series, 'The Jackson Five', 'The Osmond Brothers' and 'The Adams Family' and in the advertising industry he had worked on famous TV campaigns such as the PG Tips Chimps commercials.

So the two worlds continued to run concurrently for several years including the forming of his own band at the age of 23 and playing in many of the big London hotels and banqueting suites for functions and charity dances.

The band was very successful and eventually became 'The Mel Danser Showband and Singers', competing with the likes of Ray McVay, Andy Ross, Johnny Howard etc. on the London and home counties circuit. As a result Mel took the plunge and went full time pro with the band and his singing appearances.

In 1978 Mel won ATV's 'New Faces' singing 'Send In The Clowns'

Over the years many great musicians, singers and entertainers have worked for and with Mel, Geoff Carter-tenor- clari, Harry Burn-trumpet, Fred Jameson-trumpet-horn, Digby Fairweather - trumpet, Bill Suet-alto-bari, Ziggy Ludvigson-tenor, Harry Klein-alto-bari, Len Skeat-bass, Pete Holder-bass, Eddie Freeborne-drums, Pete Bray-drums, Woody Ray-keyboards, Jack Emblow-accordian, Tony Compton-accordion, Brian Dexter-keyboards, Buddy Kaye-keyboards, Brian Dee-keyboards, Alan Ferner-keyboards, Bobby Worth-drums, Don Lawson-drums, Jack Chilkes-tenor, Martin Drew-drums, Tom McQuator jnr.-guitar vocals, Tom Mcquator snr.-trumpet, Andre Mesada-bass, Ray Kent-guitar vocals, Brian Johnson-drums, Lawry Larkey-drums, Don Lang-trombone, Barry Francis-piano, Don Hunt-piano, Debbie Lee-vocals, Jan Mesada-vocals, Lee Gibson-vocals, Val Miller-vocals, John China-piano, Roger Cuphey-bass, Mark Cecil-drums, Tim Huskisson-clari/piano, Chris Gower-trombone, Paul Eshelby-trumpet, Martin Koch-arranger MD, Frankie Vaughn, Bob Monkhouse and man,many,many,many more wonderful pros.

Nowadays Mel is still singing at a few well chosen gigs like his guest appearances with The Thames TV Big Band, performing to those fabulous arrangements that Nelson Riddle and Billy May did for Frank Sinatra and he now paints just for his own pleasure. He lives a more relaxed life in his apartment on the seafront in Westcliff-on-Sea, just down the road from Buddy Greco, no less. Hey, don't knock it, there's a kind of magic going on, on 'The Essex Riviera'.

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