The Big Country
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2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

3 items from 2013


Hal Needham obituary

27 October 2013 5:06 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Hollywood stuntman and film director who scored huge successes with Smokey and the Bandit and The Cannonball Run

Upset by the critical response to his work, the stuntman turned film director Hal Needham, who has died aged 82, took out advertisements in Variety and other trade papers. They featured quotes from negative reviews for his movies including Smokey and the Bandit (1977) and The Cannonball Run (1981), alongside a wheelbarrow overflowing with dollar bills.

Needham made a point. His rumbustious 1977 directorial debut had grossed over $100m – an enormous return on its modest budget. He was still milking that particular creation some 20 years later, producing and directing a series of television movies, including Bandit Goes Country and Beauty and the Bandit.

These and other films, many of which starred Burt Reynolds, were seen by an audience of hundreds of millions worldwide, yet few reference books acknowledged his 45-year-long career — an unjustified omission, if only »

- Brian Baxter

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Hal Needham obituary

27 October 2013 5:06 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Hollywood stuntman and film director who scored huge successes with Smokey and the Bandit and The Cannonball Run

Upset by the critical response to his work, the stuntman turned film director Hal Needham, who has died aged 82, took out advertisements in Variety and other trade papers. They featured quotes from negative reviews for his movies including Smokey and the Bandit (1977) and The Cannonball Run (1981), alongside a wheelbarrow overflowing with dollar bills.

Needham made a point. His rumbustious 1977 directorial debut had grossed over $100m – an enormous return on its modest budget. He was still milking that particular creation some 20 years later, producing and directing a series of television movies, including Bandit Goes Country and Beauty and the Bandit.

These and other films, many of which starred Burt Reynolds, were seen by an audience of hundreds of millions worldwide, yet few reference books acknowledged his 45-year-long career — an unjustified omission, if only »

- Brian Baxter

Permalink | Report a problem


Making Of The West: Mythmakers and truth-tellers

3 January 2013 6:16 PM, PST | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »

The “adult” Western – as it would come to be called –  was a long time coming.  A Hollywood staple since the days of The Great Train Robbery (1903), the Western offered spectacle and action set against the uniquely American milieu of the Old West – a historical period which, at the dawn of the motion picture industry, was still fresh in the nation’s memory.  What the genre rarely offered was dramatic substance.

Early Westerns often adopted the same traditions of the popular Wild West literature and dime novels of the 19th and early 20th centuries producing, as a consequence, highly romantic, almost purely mythic portraits the Old West.  Through the early decades of the motion picture industry, the genre went through several creative cycles, alternately tilting from fanciful to realistic and back again.  By the early sound era, and despite such serious efforts as The Big Trail (1930) and The Virginian (1929), Hollywood Westerns were, »

- Bill Mesce

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2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

3 items from 2013


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