Paul Scheer sheds some light on The Room, lets us in on a secret in The Disaster Artist, and answers your questions. Plus, we explore the origins of midnight movies and take a look at IMDb's Top 10 Stars of 2017.
'Needles and Pins' is an American sitcom that never aired in Britain, and
that's no loss. In the late 1960s and early 70s, I worked for a producer
Britain who occasionally bought syndication rights to U.S. tv shows;
consequently, I got to see sample episodes of American programmes which
was considering ... including this one.
'Needles and Pins' took place amid the garment district in Seventh
New York City. In Britain, there was already a very funny sitcom with a
garment industry setting: 'The Rag Trade', which emphasised jokes over
or character development. 'Needles and Pins' wasn't very funny, because
series' creators were more interested in depicting realistic characters
plausible workplace. But this show was DULL. We see a few stock shots of
Seventh Avenue, but the action takes place almost entirely within a few
claustrophobic sets. The characters keep talking about getting the
to the cutters, or getting the samples to the buyers ... but we never SEE
the garment industry at work. No textile mills, no steam presses, no
The cast of 'Needles and Pins' included a few veteran character actors:
Norman Fell, Bernie Kopell, Milton Selzer, Louis Nye. I'm not a fan of
because I tend to associate him with the simpering 'Hi-ho, Steverino'
character he played on Steve Allen's show. Bernie Kopell is an underrated
actor, who spent much of his career chasing an easy salary in fluff like
'The Love Boat' instead of stretching his talents. Unfortunately, none of
the members of this show's talented cast were given much to do in
and Pins'. Every so often, the scriptwriters would throw a couple of
words into the dialogue, in a desperate attempt to convince us that these
bland characters onscreen were 'real' people.
I viewed several episodes of 'Needles and Pins' at a screening in London,
when the American producer was hoping to persuade a British producer to
up the foreign syndication rights. Before the screening a press kit was
handed out, touting the actress Deirdre Lenihan. In 'Needles and Pins',
played a naive but idealistic young woman who had come to New York City
work in the garment industry, hoping to make it as a fashion designer but
determined to learn every aspect of the business. The press kit for this
series assured me that Deirdre Lenihan was going to be a big tv star any
minute now. I'm still waiting. In 'Needles and Pins' she wore a really
hairstyle, with her mousy-brown hair cropped extremely short. Apparently
this was meant to make her look like a French gamine or something, but it
made her look more like one of those French peasant girls who had their
heads shaved as punishment for collaborating with the Nazis. Her
in 'Needles and Pins' is supposed to be spunky and determined, but I
her merely annoying.
Now that there are twenty million cable channels, all of them thirsty for
content, practically every show in the history of television has been
revived for cable syndication ... but not 'Needles and Pins'. There's a
reason for that. This show stank.
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