The Rogue Song (1930) - News Poster

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Rare Silent Film Actor Who Had Long Talkie Career Is TCM's Star of the Day

Adolphe Menjou movies today (This article is currently being revised.) Despite countless stories to the contrary, numerous silent film performers managed to survive the coming of sound. Adolphe Menjou, however, is a special case in that he not only remained a leading man in the early sound era, but smoothly made the transition to top supporting player in mid-decade, a position he would continue to hold for the quarter of a century. Menjou is Turner Classic Movies' Star of the Day today, Aug. 3, as part of TCM's "Summer Under the Stars" 2015 series. Right now, TCM is showing William A. Wellman's A Star Is Born, the "original" version of the story about a small-town girl (Janet Gaynor) who becomes a Hollywood star, while her husband (Fredric March) boozes his way into oblivion. In typical Hollywood originality (not that things are any different elsewhere), this 1937 version of the story – produced by
See full article at Alt Film Guide »

The history of MGM: Hollywood domination

Our look back over the history of MGM continues, as the silent era gives way to the talkies and musicals of the 20s and 30s...

It’s 1928, and the success of Warner Bros’ musical, The Jazz Singer, has ushered in a new age of talking pictures. Audiences adored it, and it was sink or swim time for MGM. Suddenly, the silent cinema rule book was thrown out of the window and numerous opportunities opened up in Hollywood.

Composers were in demand, and song and script writers, along with voice coaches, were needed more than ever. White Shadows In The South Seas was the first MGM sound picture, although not a talkie. Originally filmed as a silent picture, MGM realised that sound wasn’t just a passing fad and, like most studios at the time, swiftly added sound effects to its music. But they did make one character speak – and that was Leo the lion,
See full article at Den of Geek »

Cine-files: Odeon Beckenham, Kent

The third slice in our series of cinema reviews takes us to a leafy London suburb to munch on mainstream films and a kebab

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On location: Slap bang in the middle of leafy Beckenham, by the war memorial and next to Kebab Ye. Right opposite a pub that reviewers have called "grubby" and "racist". You can't miss it.

Crowd scene: Happily diverse. Teenagers, young families, couples and – when The King's Speech is on – every single pensioner within a 50-mile radius.

Back story: Originally a single-screen cinema, restaurant and ballroom, the Grade II-listed building was converted into three screens in the 1970s and then became a six-screen building when Odeon took over in 2001. The first movie shown there was The Rogue Song, notable for marking Laurel and Hardy's first appearance in colour.

Show business: Typical Odeon fare.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Debut actresses do well at Oscars; not so for men

The Academy Awards have been kind to actresses making their big-screen debuts. But men in debut performances? Not so much. With her supporting-actress nomination for the Western "True Grit," 14-year-old Hailee Steinfeld is the 73rd first-time performer to compete for an Oscar in the show's 83-year history. Fifty-year-old veteran Melissa Leo is considered the favorite to win supporting actress for "The Fighter." But Steinfeld is nominated in the category that has been especially competitive for beginners . and for child actors. Of the 72 previous Hollywood novices nominated for Oscars, 31 were up for supporting actress. Eight won, including Jennifer Hudson for 2006's "Dreamgirls," Eva Marie Saint for 1954's "On the Waterfront" and Jo Van Fleet for 1955's "East of Eden." Two first-timers who won supporting actress were even younger than Steinfeld . 10-year-old Tatum O'Neal for 1973's "Paper Moon" and 11-year-old Anna Paquin for 1993's "The Piano." The only other child actor to win an Oscar,
See full article at Filmicafe »

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