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Edna Maison, at Home in the Rarefied Aria of Opera and Silver Screen

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Mar 19, 2017

Edna Maison; Picture Player Camera Men’s Ball Souvenir Program, 1914   Maison, Maison Carmen Edna K. Maisonave[1] (Masion, Mason, Masonave, Maysonave, Malsonave) was born on August 17, 1886, (not in 1892 is as so popularly quoted) in San Francisco, California to Peter (Pierre) Maisonave a read more

Nancy Drew … Reporter, Happy Anniversary! Premiered February 18th, 1939

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Feb 18, 2017

Nancy Drew Reporter was the second of 4 films produced and distributed by Warner Brothers, starring the vivacious Bonita Granville as the plucky teenage detective, John Litel as Carson Drew her clueless, loving father and Frankie Thomas appeared as her sidekick, Ted Nickerson. Kenneth Gamet wrote t read more

The Big Combo, Happy Anniversary! Premiered February 13th, 1955

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Feb 12, 2017

On Sunday, February 13th, 1955 The Big Combo premiered in Japan and the United States. Directed by the master-of-style Joseph H. Lewis, photography by near-legendary-cinematographer John Alton, written by Philip Yordan (read further on Yordan from The Film Noir Foundation), music by David Raksin and read more

Harold Peary: The Great Gildersleeve and More

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Jan 24, 2017

  Harold Peary The radio and film character of Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve immortalized Harold Peary, whose voice is distinct in entertainment history, an unusual talent, a vocal-genius and facially, unparalleled with his often petulant and mischievous expressions, adding to him a sincere read more

Metropolis, Happy Anniversary! Premiered in Berlin, Germany at the Ufa-Palast am Zoo Movie Theater on Monday, January 10th, 1927.

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Jan 10, 2017

Metropolis changed the way I thought of Silent Film. Up to that point I had viewed the era as darkened, scratchy, unclear, with much over-exaggerated movements of body, face and eyes and to make matters worse there was no dialogue. But, here was a movie that challenged my thinking and my preconcei read more

One Froggy Evening, Happy Anniversary! Opened December 31st, 1955

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 31, 2016

Lobby Card Lobby Card A Chuck Jones masterpiece, a one of kind hilarious comment on human nature, the search for our hopes, the quest for our dreams and the pursuit of the happiness that we find in them; all told in just 7 minutes. I don’t know about you but every time I have a tech look at my read more

The Ultimate New Years Eve Movie! Repeat Performance, 1947

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 31, 2016

I guess it is never too early to prepare for the end of the year, yet, oddly enough, this film which finds its plot entangled with and dare I say integral with New Years Eve was released on May 22nd, 1947. Repeat Performance was directed by Alfred Werker, Cinematography by Lew William O’Con read more

Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ, Happy Anniversary! Premiered in New York City, December 30th, 1925

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 30, 2016

As we can see from the posters, lobby cards, programs and ads for Ben Hur: A Tale of the Christ, every means and all tools were used to promote this film, yet, because of its budget (most expensive of the silent era at 3.9 million) it lost money on its initial run, finally making a little profit in read more

F. W. Murnau, Happy Birthday! Born December 28th; 1888-1931

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 28, 2016

F. W. Murnau Storyteller supreme is an apt title for Friedrich Wilhelm Plumpe, better known as F. W. Murnau; 21 movies in 12 years, his career stopped short by an automobile accident, just prior to the premier of his last film, Tabu: A Story of the South Seas, in 1931. What a genius for moving-pictu read more

The Ultimate New Years Eve Movie! Repeat Performance, 1947

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 27, 2016

I guess it is never too early to prepare for the end of the year, yet, oddly enough, this film which finds its plot entangled with and dare I say integral with New Years Eve was released on May 22nd, 1947. Repeat Performance was directed by Alfred Werker, Cinematography by Lew William O’Con read more

Elisha Cook Jr., Happy Birthday! Born December 26th; 1903-1995

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 26, 2016

Elisha Cook Jr.   Leo DiCaprio from The Great Gatsby An initial observation: it is remarkable how much DiCaprio looks like Elisha Cook Jr.! But those smooth good looks for Cook Jr. would soon fade into the wrinkled, gnarled features which we now associate with his particularly suited voice for read more

Humphrey Bogart, Happy Birthday! Born Christmas Day; 1899-1957

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 25, 2016

Born Christmas Day of 1899, Humphrey DeForest Bogart made 8 appearances on Broadway before his first role in film came in 1928 in short film called “The Dancing Town”; it would be two years more before Bogart would make his first feature film.  His was a stalwart career, full of envious r read more

Old Yeller, Happy Anniversary! Opened Christmas Day, 1957?

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 24, 2016

    Old Yeller, did not actually have its world premiere on Christmas Day, 1957, it was seen instead on Tuesday night, December 17, in two different cities. The first venue was the Metropolitan Theater, which was on Main St. (1018) between Lamar St. and McKinney St., in downtown Houston, Texas. read more

John Brascia, Dancing Dynamo, The Expanded Experience

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 24, 2016

John Brascia   John Brascia burst upon the cinematic scene, with good looks, a tremendous smile and most of all his natural born athleticism which imbued his dance steps with vigor and excitement. His talent for dancing was immediately recognized as special and great things were heralded for hi read more

Holiday Affair, Happy Anniversary! a Delicious 1949 Christmas Time-Capsule

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 23, 2016

To say that Holiday Affair was a Christmas Eve release (most modern reports state this) is true only from the perspective that it was seen around Christmas at most theaters nationwide; another film added to that always growing list of the soft-roll-out-national-opening. Post Standard, Syracuse, New read more

Portrait of Jennie, a Production Journal, of a Timeless Christmas Gift

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 22, 2016

  Glimpses of the Portrait of Jennie in 1948: Portrait of Jennie had its general public premier on Christmas Day, 1948, at the Carthay Circle Theater, located at 6316 San Vicente Boulevard, Los Angeles, California; a more than fifteen-hundred seat theater, with nearly one-thousand on the main read more

Miracle on 34th Street; a Scrapbook of a Miraculous Film

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 18, 2016

Special does not do service to the accomplishments and the staying power of Miracle on 34th Street; as the measuring-tape said of Mary Poppins, “practically perfect in every way,” so too are the celluloid triumphs of this 1947, summer blockbuster, produced by 20th Century-Fox. The apex that Miracle read more

It’s a Wonderful Life, Christmas Movie Extraordinaire!

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 14, 2016

By the time director Frank Capra had come to the project of “It’s a Wonderful Life” he had already mastered the ability to tell a warm-hearted tale, with films such as: The Miracle Woman, 1931, American Madness, 1932, Lady for a Day, 1933, It Happened One Night, 1934, Mr. Deeds Goes to Town, 1936, read more

White Christmas: Still More, Behind the Scenes

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 7, 2016

  White Christmas the Music: Contractual obligations to Columbia records prevented Rosemary Clooney from recording the cast album for the movie “White Christmas”, because it was with Decca; Peggy Lee stepped in for the official movie release. Clooney got her due with a Columbia rel read more

White Christmas: More, Behind the Scenes

Classic Film Aficionados Posted by C. S. Williams on Dec 1, 2016

  White Christmas the Music: Contractual obligations to Columbia records prevented Rosemary Clooney from recording the cast album for the movie “White Christmas”, because it was with Decca; Peggy Lee stepped in for the official movie release. Clooney got her due with a Columbia rel read more
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