Friday, July 16, 2010

Happy birthday today to…

George F. Marion (1860, elderly character actor who played “Chris Christofferson” [not the songwriter] in both the silent and sound versions of Anna Christie; also seen in Wheeler & Woolsey’s Hook, Line and Sinker as a comical bellboy)

Heinie Conklin (1886, second banana and bit player who started out working as a Keystone Kop for the King of Comedy, Mack Sennett)

Percy Kilbride (1888, pictured with Marjorie Main, droll, rustic stage and movie character actor best-remembered as Pa Kettle in Universal’s Ma and Pa Kettle film series)

Larry Semon (1889, once-popular silent slapstick comedian remembered primarily by only comedy buffs today)

Blossom Seely (1891, legendary singer-actress associated with vaudeville and her longtime partner, Benny Fields)

Andrew L. Stone (1902, writer-director-producer of motion picture films like Cry Terror! and The Last Voyage)

Vincent Sherman (1906, motion picture director who helmed vehicles like All Through the Night, Old Acquaintance, Mr. Skeffington, Goodbye, My Fancy and The Young Philadelphians)

Barbara Stanwyck (1907, consummate motion picture actress who starred in vehicles like The Bitter Tea of General Yen, The Lady Eve, Ball of Fire and Double Indemnity; later starred on TV’s The Big Valley)

Orville Redenbacher (1907, popcorn magnate)

Sonny Tufts (1911, unlikely silver screen thesp who managed to capitalize on his handsome looks and appear in movies like So Proudly We Hail!, Here Come the Waves, Easy Living…and Cat Women of the Moon)

Ginger Rogers (1911, multi-talented singer/actress/hoofer who graced such films as Gold Diggers of 1933, Vivacious Lady and Oscar-winning Kitty Foyle, frequent on-screen dance partner of Fred Astaire)

Barnard Hughes (1915, TDOY character actor god seen in films such as Cold Turkey, The Hospital and The Pursuit of Happiness; also did much television work on All in the Family, The Bob Newhart Show, Blossom and his own starring sitcoms, Doc, Mr. Merlin and The Cavanaughs)

Philip Pine (1920, busy character actor in films and television; notable roles in The Set-Up, Men in War and Brainstorm; best-known for playing the evil Colonel Green in the Star Trek episode “The Savage Curtain”)

Bess Myerson (1924, 86, former Miss America [1945], I’ve Got a Secret panelist, Candid Camera co-host, New York City pol and shoplifter)

Joe Lynch (1925, British comic actor best-remembered for his role as tailor Patrick Kelly in the Britcom Never Mind the Quality, Feel the Width)

Stanley Clements (1926, former moppet actor best remembered for replacing Leo Gorcey in the Bowery Boys feature film comedies from 1956 to 1958)

Robert Sheckley (1928, author of science-fiction short stories and novels)

Desmond Dekker (1941, lead Ace)

Ann Turkel (1946, 64, TDOY character actress fave in films like Paper Lion, The Cassandra Crossing and Humanoids From the Deep)

Dave Goelz (1946, 64, Muppeteer and the voice of my favorite, The Great Gonzo)

Stewart Copeland (1952, 58, music composer and one-time Police-man)

Faye Grant (1957, 53, actress ingénue whom I’ll always remember as the smokin’ hot Rhonda Blake in The Greatest American Hero and Juliet Parrish in the original V)

Ed Watz (1958, 52, author and film historian whose books on Wheeler & Woolsey and the Columbia comedy shorts have been a major influence here at TDOY)

Terry Pendleton (1960, 50, beloved third baseman for the Atlanta Braves from 1991-94)

Phoebe Cates (1963, 47, smokin’ hot TDOY actress fave in films like Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Gremlins, Shag and Gremlins 2: The New Batch)

Daryl “Chill” Mitchell (1965, 45, brilliant comic actor [House Party, Sgt. Bilko, The John Larroquette Show] who suffered a minor career setback after injuring his spine in a motorcycle accident in 2001)

Will Farrell (1967, 43, actor/writer/comedian and one-time Not Ready for Prime Time player whom my sister Kat insists is the center of the comedy universe, much to my head-scratching bewilderment)

Rain Pryor (1969, 41, multi-talented daughter of comedy legend Richard who was seen in sitcoms Head of the Class and Rude Awakening)

Corey Feldman (1971, 39, former moppet actor who is so freakin’ annoying I can’t believe I even included him on this list)

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Amanda said...

Man, there are so many fabulous birthdays today: Barbara Stanwyck, Ginger Rogers, etc.

Scott C. said...

Larry Semon, as you probably won't be astonished to hear, has a star in a fairly prominent spot on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and it's a popular subject for amateur photographers and their star-straddling models, the both of whom take no small delight in repeating Larry's last name ad nauseum.