Pete Kelly's Blues (1955) - News Poster

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Bram Stoker's Dracula, Helena Bonham-Carter, and Peggy Lee Fever

On this day in history as it relates to the movies...

1828 Feral teenager Kaspar Hauser is discovered wandering Nuremberg, claiming to have been raised in total isolation. Theories abound and the story inspires many artists down the road including Werner Herzog in the film The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974).

1877 Influential dancer Isadora Duncan is born. Vanessa Redgrave gets an Oscar nomination playing her in Isadora! (1968)

1886 Al Jolson is born. Will later star in the first "talkie" The Jazz Singer (1927)

1894 Silent film star Norma Talmadge is born

1897 Bram Stoker's epistolary novel "Dracula" is published. Never stops being adapted for film and television but our hearts will always belong to Francis Coppola's Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992) despite the aggravating double possessive

1907 John Wayne was born. Did he always talk like that?

1913 Peter Cushing is born in England. Later stars in Hammer Horror films with his irl best friend Christopher Lee, the Dracula to his Van Helsing.
See full article at FilmExperience »

The Vikings

Richard Fleischer's Viking saga is a great star showcase: for the grinning one-eyed Kirk Douglas, sullen one-handed Tony Curtis and the heavy-breathing, two-breasted Janet Leigh. Jack Cardiff gives us the fjords of Norway, lean and mean Viking ships, and a brain-bashing acrobatic castle assault designed to out-do Burt Lancaster. With Ernest Borgnine ("Ohhh-dinnnn!!"), James Donald and Alexander Knox. And as the old song goes, it don't mean a thing if it ain't got Frank Thring. The Vikings Blu-ray Kl Studio Classics 1958 / Color / 2:35 widescreen / 114 min. / Street Date March 8, 2016 / available through Kino Lorber / 29.95 Starring Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine, Janet Leigh, James Donald, Alexander Knox, Maxine Audley, Frank Thring. Cinematography Jack Cardiff Production Designer Harper Goff Film Editor Hugo Williams Original Music Mario Nascimbene Written by Calder Willingham adapted by Dale Wasserman from a novel by Edison Marshall Produced by Jerry Bresler Directed by Richard Fleischer

Reviewed by Glenn Erickson
See full article at Trailers from Hell »

Martin Scorsese's 15 Favorite Gangster Flicks

  • Cinematical
Martin Scorsese's 15 Favorite Gangster Flicks
I guess it was inevitable that somebody should ask Martin Scorsese, a man whose reputation was made and is still probably widely typified by his crime stories, to come up with a list of his favorite gangster movies. The Daily Beast did just that and while it's easy to see why, it looks like Scorsese is a big Jimmy Cagney fan. Being a voracious film fan, many of the titles on Scorsese's list are not your typical mob fare (Sorry, no Godfather to be found). But there is The Public Enemy, my favorite Cagney role and probably one of my favorite gangster movies of all time, at the top of Scorsese's chronological list.

While it would be hard to imagine Scorsese submitting a dull survey, it's nice to see that he's putting his curatorial powers to good use. After Cagney roles like White Heat and The Roaring Twenties, there are
See full article at Cinematical »

Reese Witherspoon set to play Peggy Lee in Nora Ephron's biopic

Actor who won an Oscar for her portrayal of June Carter will star as the late, great jazz singer in Ephron's latest project

Reese Witherspoon is to return to the territory which won her an Oscar after signing on to play Peggy Lee in an untitled biopic of the late, great jazz singer. Writer-director Nora Ephron, whose Julie & Julia won Meryl Streep a raft of awards last year, is in line to take charge of the script and cameras.

Best known for her cover version of the Little Willie John song, Fever – to which she added her own additional lyrics – Lee was a product of the big band era, a singer, songwriter and composer whose career spanned nearly seven decades. Married four times, she died in 2002 at the age of 81.

The singer was one of the first members of Capitol Records' "old guard" to embrace the new rock and roll sound,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Actress Janet Leigh Dies at 77

Actress Janet Leigh Dies at 77
Actress Janet Leigh, whose ill-fated shower in Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho became one of the most frightening moments in cinema, died Sunday at her home in Beverly Hills; she was 77. According to a spokeswoman for Leigh's daughter, Jamie Lee Curtis, Leigh "died peacefully" at her home on Sunday afternoon, and had been battling vasculitis, an inflammation of the blood vessels, for the past year. A California native, Leigh (birth name Jeannette Helen Morrison) was reportedly discovered by actress Norma Shearer, who saw a photo of a young girl on the desk of Leigh's father and asked if she could borrow it. A screen test for MGM followed, and Leigh was cast in 1947's The Romance of Rosy Ridge. A number of ingénue rolls followed, most notably Little Women, Angels in the Outfield, and The Naked Spur. In 1951, Leigh married the equally photogenic Tony Curtis, and their romance and marriage was press fodder for years, even as they appeared in less-than-memorable films together, including Houdini, The Perfect Furlough, and The Vikings; the two divorced in 1962 after having two daughters, Kelly and Jamie Lee. Leigh's roles improved with her age, and she graduated from maidens in costume dramas to more contemporary heroines, and throughout the 50s she starred in My Sister Eileen, Pete Kelly's Blues, and Jet Pilot, among other films.

Leigh had one of her most memorable roles as Charlton Heston's abducted wife in Orson Welles' 1958 noir classic Touch of Evil, but just two years later she made film history by playing the doomed heroine Marion Crane in Psycho. Her brief but memorable turn in the Hitchcock film, punctuated by the classic shower scene in which the actress was slashed to death by Anthony Perkins, earned Leigh a Golden Globe and her only Academy Award nomination. Though she also appeared opposite Frank Sinatra in the now-classic The Manchurian Candidate, Leigh's Psycho turn overshadowed the rest of her career, a fact that she happily embraced, writing a book about the film's making, Psycho: Behind the Scenes in the Classic Thriller, in 1995. Leigh worked sporadically through the 70s, and appeared with daughter Jamie Lee in 1980's The Fog, but went into semi-retirement in the 80s and 90s; she appeared again with her daughter in the 1998 sequel Halloween: H20. Leigh is survived by her fourth husband, Robert Brandt, and daughters Jamie Lee Curtis and Kelly Curtis. --Prepared by IMDb staff

Peggy Lee's Family's Oscar Fury

  • WENN
Peggy Lee's Family's Oscar Fury
The family of late great singer Peggy Lee have lashed out at the Oscars organisers for leaving her out of the annual In Memoriam segment of the awards show. Lee, who died in January, was mysteriously left out of the tributes at the Academy Awards last month, leading her daughter Nicki Lee Foster to write to Academy director Bruce Davis demanding an explanation. Foster is also demanding that her mother be remembered next year, but Davis insists that won't happen. He admits he has hundreds of similar letters from people who feel their loved ones were wrongly omitted. He says, "The In Memoriam segment generates more response than anything else we do and it's all negative." Davis admits the telecast simply doesn't have time to remember the 100-plus Academy members who pass each year. He adds, "It is a very cruel couple of weeks toward the end as selections are made." And by way of explaining to Lee's family why the singer was left out of this year's tribute to the dead, he explains that she was more known for hits like Fever and Is That All There Is? than her film work, even though she was Oscar-nominated for her role in 1955 film Pete Kelly's Blues. Foster insists she'll battle on to get her mother an Oscar tribute, after the Academy chose to honour Aaliyah, who made just two films before her death last year. Family spokeswoman Holly Azzari says, "Aaliyah didn't have a distinguished film career and yet they eliminated a 20th century icon."

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