Saturday, July 17, 2010

Happy birthday today to…

Erle Stanley Gardner (1889, pulp fiction mystery/detective author who introduced us to the likes of Doug Selby, Bertha Cool and Donald Lam…and his most famous creation, lawyer Perry Mason)

Stanley Ridges (1890, British stage, film and television character actor whose vehicles include To Be or Not to Be, Tarzan Triumphs, The Master Race and An Act of Murder)

James Cagney (1899, pictured, one of the greatest stage, film and television actors of all time…sorry for the hyperbole, but it’s true)

Marcel Dalio (1900, Gallic character actor remembered for roles in Casablanca, The Song of Bernadette and To Have and Have Not)

Edward Gargan (1902, peerless stage, film and television actor best-remembered as comic relief Detective Bates in R-K-O’s Falcon films; brother of William)

William Gargan (1905, peerless stage, film and television actor best-remembered as radio’s Barrie Craig, Investigator and TV’s Martin Kane, Private Eye; brother of Edward)

John Carroll (1906, silver screen Zorro and poor man’s Clark Gable in films like Only Angels Have Wings, Congo Maisie, Lady Be Good and Flying Tigers)

Jack Douglas (1909, legendary radio [Bob Hope, Red Skelton, Jack Carson, Durante and Moore, Martin and Lewis, The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet] and television [George Gobel, Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In] scribe, author and frequent Jack Paar guest; Bob Hope once dubbed him the “mad dog” of his writing staff)

Barbara O’Neil (1910, character actress best-known as Ellen O’Hara—Scarlet’s ma—in motion picture classic Gone With the Wind)

Irene Manning (1912, actress-singer seen in the likes of Yankee Doodle Dandy, The Big Shot, Shine On Harvest Moon and Hollywood Canteen)

Art Linkletter (1912, legendary host of radio/TV’s People are Funny and House Party)

Lucille Benson (1914, character actress frequently seen on television on shows like Nashville 99, The Ropers, Alice and Bosom Buddies)

Cass Daley (1915, singer-comedienne who was the poor man’s Martha Raye in films like The Fleet’s In, Crazy House and Star Spangled Rhythm…I said it and I’m glaaaad!)

Phyllis Diller (1917, 93, legendary stand-up comedienne seen on TV [The Pruitts of Southampton] and several million bad movies with Bob Hope in the 1960s)

Helen Walker (1920, motion picture actress seen to good advantage in films like Murder, He Says, Nightmare Alley, Call Northside 777 and The Big Combo)

June Vincent (1920, B-picture actress seen to adequate advantage in films like The Climax, Here Come the Co-Eds, Black Angel and Trapped by Boston Blackie)

Acquanetta (1921, B-picture seen to hilarious advantage in films like Dead Man’s Eyes, Tarzan and the Leopard Woman…and her signature roles in Captive Wild Woman and Jungle Woman)

James Weinstein (1926. founding editor/publisher of In These Times)

Charles Champlin (1926, 84, film historian and critic for the Los Angeles Times from 1965 to 1980)

Vince Guaraldi (1928, musician/composer famous for the music in the Charlie Brown specials and for the 1963 pop hit Cast Your Fate to the Wind [as the Vince Guaraldi Trio])

Ray Galton (1930, 80, British comedy scribe who, along with partner Alan Simpson, wrote for Britcom landmarks Hancock’s Half Hour and Steptoe and Son)

Donald Sutherland (1935, 75, accomplished stage, film and television actor who has never won an Academy Award despite superb performances in films like M*A*S*H, Don’t Look Now, The Day of the Locust, Ordinary People, etc.)

Diahann Carroll (1935, 75, television icon [Julia, Dynasty, A Different World])

Phyllis Davis (1940, 70, smokin’ hot blonde actress who was one of the only two redeeming qualities in the TV series Vega$ [the other being Greg Morris])

Tim Brooke-Taylor (1940, 70, actor-writer-comedian [I’m Sorry, I’ll Read That Again, At Last the 1948 Show, You Must Be the Husband, Me and My Gal] and Goodie)

Gale Garnett (1942, 68, actress-singer who scored a Grammy-winning pop smash with We’ll Sing in the Sunshine in 1964)

Spencer Davis (1942, 68, leader of self-titled rock group that scored Top Ten hits with Gimme Some Lovin’ and I’m a Man)

Catherine Schell (1944, 66, Hungarian-born actress who’s been in many things but I always remember her as Maya in the second season of Space: 1999)

P.J. Soles (1950, 60, TDOY actress fave in cult movies like Carrie, Halloween, Rock ‘n’ Roll High School and Stripes)

Lucie Arnaz (1951, 59, famous daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz who co-starred with her mom in the sitcom Here’s Lucy from 1968-74)

Phoebe Snow (1952, 58, pop music vocalist [Poetry Man, Gone at Last])

Nicolette Larson (1952, pop music vocalist [Lotta Love, Make a Little Magic])

David Hasselhoff (1952, 58, beefcake actor-singer whose TV success [Knight Rider, Baywatch] still perplexes me to this day)

Thomas Carter (1953, 57, talented television director/producer who started out acting on shoes like The White Shadow and the forgotten Ned Beatty sitcom Szysznyk)

Robert Romanus (1956, 54, character actor best remembered as ticket scalper/douchebag Mike Damone in Fast Times at Ridgemont High)

Denise Miller (1963, 47, one-time television ingénue who played the part of Archie Bunker’s niece Billie on Archie Bunker’s Place)

Craig Morgan (1965, 45, country music vocalist and member of the Redneck Yacht Club)

Beth Littleford (1968, 42, falling-down funny comic actress seen to great advantage on Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show from 1996 to 2000)

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Scott C. said...

MST3K fans will remember Acquanetta as "Native Girl" in the classic Season 2 episode, LOST CONTINENT ("Rock climbing, Joel." "Rock climbing, Crow.")

They'll also remember Catherine Schell (billed as Catherina von Schell -- oooh. Snooty) in the Season 1 ep, MOON ZERO TWO.

Amanda said...

Another day of great birthdays! Hasselhoff confuses me too.

Brent McKee said...

Based on actress ages, Ellen O'Hara gave birth to Scarlett when she was 3 years old. Hooray for Hollywood casting!

The Derelict said...

Holy crap, I forgot Cagney was born on the 17th!

All the best people are born in July. ;)