Saturday, August 14, 2010

Happy birthday today to…

Francis Ford (1881, older brother of TDOY director god John and a motion picture director in his own right; notable character presence in his bro’s films and also movies like Charlie Chan at the Circus, The Ox-Bow Incident, Eyes of Texas and The Far Frontier)

Robert Woolsey (1888, pictured with Wheeler and friend, comedic partner of Bert Wheeler and a hysterical presence in films such as Half Shot at Sunrise, Peach-o-Reno, Hold ‘Em Jail, Diplomaniacs, Hips, Hips, Hooray!, Cockeyed Cavaliers, Kentucky Kernels and The Nitwits)

Carl Benton Reid (1893, TDOY character fave who can be seen in such films as The Little Foxes, In a Lonely Place, The Killer That Stalked New York, The Sniper, Escape from Fort Bravo, Broken Lance, The Left Hand of God and Pressure Point)

Alma Reville (1899, Mrs. Alfred Hitchcock; collaborated on many of her husband’s films including Suspicion, Shadow of a Doubt, The Paradine Case and Stage Fright—in addition to writing the screenplay for Fred Allen’s It’s in the Bag!)

George Worthing Yates (1901, scriptwriter that for every The Tall Target, This Woman is Dangerous, It Came From Beneath the Sea and Earth vs. the Flying Saucers also churned out the likes of Attack of the Puppet People and War of the Colossal Beast)

Milliard Mitchell (1903, TDOY character actor god who gave first-rate performances in Kiss of Death, A Foreign Affair, Thieves’ Highway, Twelve O’Clock High, The Gunfighter, Winchester ’73, Mister 880, Singin’ in the Rain and The Naked Spur)

Dick Lundy (1907, veteran animator who started out at Disney, directed many of the Woody Woodpecker and Andy Panda shorts for Walter Lantz, and contributed a great deal to the cartoons cranked out by Hanna-Barbera when television animation became the vogue)

Ed Herlihy (1909, veteran radio/television announcer who worked on Perry Como’s Kraft Music Hall and The Colgate Comedy Hour; narrated many of Universal’s newsreels during the 1940s and was also the opening announcer on M Squad)

Andrea Leeds (1914, ingénue actress who hung it up after four years of filmmaking but is remembered for roles in classics like The Bohemian Girl, Come and Get It, Letter of Introduction, The Real Glory and her signature turn in Stage Door)

Alice Ghostley (1924, television icon [Jackie Gleason and His American Scene Magazine, Captain Nice, Bewitched, Mayberry R.F.D., Designing Women])

Lina Wertmüller (1926, 84, Italian film director whose works include Let’s Talk About Men, Love and Anarchy, All Screwed Up, Swept Away, Seven Beauties, A Night Full of Rain and Blood Feud)

Liz Fraser (1933, 77, British comic actress whose films include I’m All Right, Jack, Two Way Stretch, The Americanization of Emily, The Family Way, Dad’s Army and several of the Carry On movies)

Trevor Bannister (1936, 74, Britcom icon [The Dustinbinmen, Are You Being Served?, Last of the Summer Wine])

Dash Crofts (1940, 70, duet partner of Jo, Seals [Get Closer, Summer Breeze, Diamond Girl])

Connie Smith (1941, 69, country music legend [Once a Day, Cincinnati, Ohio, Ain’t Had No Lovin’, Nobody But a Fool, The Hurtin’s All Over] and Mrs. Marty Stuart)

David Crosby (1941, 69, singer/songwriter who was a one-time member of The Byrds and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young)

Lynne Cheney (1941, 69, wife of former Vice President Dick Cheney, which makes her une dickhead formidable by association)

Wim Wenders (1945, 65, German motion picture director whose films include The Goalie’s Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, Alice in the Cities, Kings of the Road, The American Friend, Hammett, Paris, Texas and Wings of Desire)

Steve Martin (1945, 65, actor-writer-director and wild and crazy guy)

Susan Saint James (1946, 64, television icon [It Takes a Thief, The Name of the Game, McMillan and Wife, Kate & Allie])

Larry Graham (1946, 64, R&B vocalist-songwriter [One in a Million You] and one-time member of Sly and the Family Stone)

Antonio Fargas (1946, 64, film and television character actor who, no matter how serious the role, is always going to be remembered as the comic relief pimp Huggy Bear on Starsky and Hutch)

Jim Wynorski (1950, 60, cult movie director whose oeuvre includes Chopping Mall, Big Bad Mama II, Not of This Earth, The Return of Swamp Thing, 976-Evil II, and Dinosaur Island)

Gary Larson (1950, 60, creator of the comic strip The Far Side)

Carl Lumbly (1951, 59, veteran character actor best known for his roles on TV’s Cagney & Lacey, M.A.N.T.I.S. and Alias)

Tom DiCillo (1953, 57, independent film director whose movies include Johnny Suede, Living in Oblivion, Box of Moonlight and The Real Blonde)

Jackée Harry (1956, 54, television icon [227, Sister, Sister, Everybody Hates Chris])

Marcia Gay Harden (1959, 51, Academy Award-winning character actress fave seen in films such as Miller’s Crossing, Late for Dinner, Used People, The Daytrippers, Pollock, Mystic River, Bad News Bears and The Dead Girl)

Susan Olsen (1961, 49, precocious* moppet actress immortalized on television as the sibilant Cindy Brady on The Brady Bunch)

Halle Berry (1966, 44, Academy Award-winning smokin’ hot actress seen in movies such as Jungle Fever, Losing Isiah, Bulworth, Why Do Fools Fall in Love, X-Men, Monster’s Ball, Die Another Day and Gothika)

Mila Kunis (1983, 27, smokin’ hot actress best known for her TV gigs as Jackie on That 70’s Show and the voice of Family Guy’s Meg Griffin)

*On loan from Scott Clevenger

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1 comment:

Scott said...

Actually, I don't think Cindy Brady qualifies as "precocious," since even Susan Olsen thought her character was supposed to be retarded.

MST3K fans will recall George Worthing Yates from a bunch of films (most of the Bert I. Gordon oeuvre), including The Amazing Colossal Man and it's sequel, the aforementioned War of the Colossal Beast, as well as Earth vs. the Spider, and Tormented (a Halloween tradition around the C. household). But he's probably best remembered because his snooty cognomen always inspired Crow to mockingly swoon, "Ohhhh, is the great George Worthing Yates going to write the screenplay?"

Ed Herlihy was referenced many many times on the show, usually in connection with Kraft Music Hall, and most memorably in the hilarious faux commercial in episode 211 First Spaceship on Venus, in which Servo does Herlihy shilling demented Kraft products like Creamy Clotted Palm Spread, Festive Skin Mittens, and the Traditional Gut-Loaf Whistle Pie.