Thursday, July 8, 2010

Happy birthday today to…

Nigel De Brulier (1877, British silent/sound film character actor in so many films but for some odd reason I can only think of his work in serials [Zorro’s Fighting Legion, Adventures of Captain Marvel, The Adventures of Smilin’ Jack])

Paul Leni (1885, silent film directing great [The Cat and the Canary, The Man Who Laughs])

Eugene Pallette (1889, rotund and gravelly-voiced character actor [My Man Godfrey, The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Lady Eve, Heaven Can Wait])

Lambert Hillyer (1889, B-western director who also helmed Dracula’s Daughter and the 1943 Batman serial)

Erik Chitty (1907, British character actor who I best remember as Mr. Smith in the classic Britcom Please Sir!)

Louis Jordan (1908, Tympany Five leader and popular jazz/R&B vocalist-musician [Is You Is Or Is You Ain’t My Baby, Caldonia, Ain’t Nobody Here But Us Chickens])

Bill Thompson (1913, pictured, incomparable cartoon voice artist [Droopy, J. Audubon Woodlore, Touché Turtle] and OTR actor [Fibber McGee & Molly’s Old Timer, Wallace Wimple, etc.])

Walter Kerr (1913, film critic whose book The Silent Clowns was a major influence on my early film education; husband of humorist Jean)

Billy Eckstine (1914, jazz-big band musician-bandleader [I’ve Got a Date with Rhythm, Everything I Have is Yours])

Jean Rouverol (1916, 94, actress, soap opera scribe [Search for Tomorrow, As the World Turns, Guiding Light] and author)

Faye Emerson (1917, actress/game show panelist [What’s in a Word, I’ve Got a Secret] and fashion plate)

Craig Stevens (1918, film actor [Humoresque, Blues Busters, Where the Sidewalk Ends] and TV’s Peter Gunn)

Jerry Vale (1932, 78, pop music vocalist [Two Purple Shadows, You Don’t Know Me])

Barbara Loden (1932, director-star of cult movie classic Wanda)

Marty Feldman (1933, pop-eyed British comedian-writer [Round the Horne, At Last the 1948 Show] and Mel Brooks fave [Young Frankenstein, Silent Movie])

Steve Lawrence (1935, 75, actor, pop music vocalist and duet partner of Eydie Gorme)

Jerry Belson (1938. television comedy scribe-producer who had a longtime collaboration with actor-writer-director-producer Garry Marshall [The Dick Van Dyke Show, The Odd Couple])

Marcia Rodd (1940, 70, TDOY actress fave [Little Murders, Handle With Care, Last Embrace])

Phil Gramm (1942, 68, former Texas senator and un dickhead formidable)

Jeffrey Tambor (1944, 66, television icon [The Ropers, Hill Street Blues, The Larry Sanders Show, Arrested Development])

Kim Darby (1947, 63, TDOY actress fave [True Grit, The Grissom Gang, Better Off Dead…)

Mary Ellen Trainor (1950, 60, TDOY actress fave [Lethal Weapon, Die Hard, Executive Decision)

Anjelica Huston (1951, 59, Oscar-winning actress [Prizzi’s Honor] and daughter of TDOY directing god John

A. Whitney Brown (1952, 58, writer-comedian who specialized at looking at things through The Big Picture)

Pauline Quirke (1959, 51, British comic actress best remembered for her roles on the Britcoms Birds of a Feather, Shine On, Harvey Moon and Down to Earth)

Toby Keith (1961, 49, country music vocalist who should have been a cowboy)

Rocky Carroll (1963, 47, television icon [Roc, Chicago Hope, The Agency, NCIS])

Lee Tergesen (1965. 45, television actor who won high praise for his starring role on Oz even though I still think of him as the Bill Paxton copycat in the TV sitcom version of Weird Science)

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