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Where those associated with Western films from around the world are laid to rest.

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  • 10/31/18--05:47: RIP Rio Fanning

  • Obituary: Rio Fanning – ‘led a double life as an actor and a writer’

    The Stage
    By Michael Quinn
    October 30, 2018

    As the actor Rio Fanning and writer Michael Robartes, the son of Irish playwright AP Fanning led a double life – one that also included periods as a director.

    Born in Newry, County Down, Fanning was raised in Tralee on Ireland’s Atlantic coastline and made his acting debut in school plays and pageants produced by his father.
    Rio Fanning (right) with Eric Richards in Ron Hutchinson’s Eejits in 1978

    Having paid his way through the London School of Drama, he found early work in regional rep and was a founder-member of the short-lived Bangor New Theatre in 1955, then the first professional company in his native Northern Ireland to be formed outside Belfast.

    He made his West End debut as Captain Brennan in Sean O’Casey’s The Plough and the Stars at the Mermaid Theatre in 1962. The following year, he was seen in the British premiere of Brendan Behan’s The Big House at Theatre Royal Stratford East and gave what The Stage described as “a superlative performance” as Richard III at the Marlowe Canterbury.

    The year 1965 saw him sharing the stage as Steinbauer with Maximilian Schell (in his UK stage debut), George Divine and Jill Bennett in John Osborne’s A Patriot for Me at the Royal Court.

    He was seen in Ron Hutchinson’s Eejits at the Sheffield Crucible, transferring with it to the Bush Theatre in 1978, returned to Sloane Square for David Leland’s Psy-Warriors in 1979, and later developed close associations with Derby Playhouse, the Orange Tree Richmond and Birmingham Rep, where he was seen as Kent to David Ryall’s King Lear in 1980.

    He formed two companies: the Imperial Theatre Group, with actor Tony Doyle, based at the Oval, Kennington, in 1970, and Threesome Productions, with actors Stella Fox and Margi Clarke, in 1991.

    Having made his screen debut in a 1959 adaptation of Great Expectations, his swansong was a 2014 episode of Doctors. In the intervening 55 years, he had lead roles in Budgie (1971-72), The Regiment (1973), Doctor Who (1977), Emmerdale (1980-82), The District Nurse (1984) and All Creatures Great and Small (1978-90).

    As Rio Fanning, he wrote the six-part The Adventures of Swiss Family Robinson (1998) and an episode of Peak Practice (1999), while his alter ego Michael Robartes was responsible for more than 30 episodes of soap operas Emmerdale and EastEnders and television series The District Nurse in the decade to 1994.

    James Arnold Rio Fanning was born on November 7, 1931, and died on August 12, aged 86. He is survived by his second wife, actor Karen Ford, a son from his first marriage, and his adopted son.

    FANNING, Rio (James Arnold Rio Fanning)
    Born: 11/7/1931, Newry, County Down, Ireland
    Died: 8/12/2018, U.K.

    Rio Fanning’s western – writer:
    Hatfields & McCoys (TV) - 2012

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  • 10/31/18--07:55: RIP Jane Actman

  • Alternate Obituaries
    Pamelyn Ferdin
    10/30/2018 4:22pm

    Sad news - Jane Actman, who played my sister Barbara on "The Paul Lynde
    Show," has passed away at the age of 69. My deepest sympathy to her
    husband Gene and their family.

    As much as I appreciate the kind words and condolences, they are more appropriately directed to Gene, who been head over heels in love with Jane for 50 years.

    Jane Actman was born on April 6, 1949 in New York City, New York, USA. She is an actress, known for Wonder Woman (1975), Last of the Mohicans (1977) and Mannix (1967).

    ACTMAN, Jane
    Born: 4/6/1949, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
    Died: 10/2?/2018, New York City, New York U.S.A.

    Jane Actman’s westerns – actress:
    The Virginian (TV) – 1969 (Laurie Cantrel)
    Last of the Mohicans – 1977 (Alice Morgan)

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  • 11/02/18--07:13: RIP Álvaro de Luna

  • The actor Álvaro de Luna dies, the Algarrobo of 'Curro Jiménez'

    El Pais

    The actor Álvaro de Luna, known for his role as Algarrobo in the series Curro Jiménez, has died this morning at age 83 due to liver cancer complications he has been dragging for some time, according to his wife, Carmen Barajas, confirmed to EL COUNTRY. His remains will be transferred to the funeral home of the M30.

    Álvaro de Luna was born on April 10, 1935 in Madrid, where he studied medicine and where he also aroused his desire for interpretation. He started as a specialist, which gave him the opportunity to work in Hollywood. He dubbed tapes of the old West in productions by the Italian Dino de Laurentiis and action scenes for Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis in the Spartacus, by Stanley Kubrick (1960), and for Anthony Quinn in the Barabbas, by Richard Fleischer (1962).

    After five years as a professional in this field outside of Spain (France, North Africa, Yugoslavia and Italy), De Luna devoted himself entirely to interpreting, especially on television and Spanish cinemas. In the decade of the 60 acted in films like Objective: The stars (1963); The mask of Scaramouche (1963), Aventuras del Oeste (1965), by Joaquín Luis Romero Marchent; Those that have to serve (1967); o Challenge in Rio Bravo "(1965) and Navajo Joe (1966).

    In the seventies and eighties his film career became more discontinuous, with collaborations with Mariano Ozores or Jaime de Armiñán, among others. However, popularity came first through television: the Curro Jiménez series captivated Spanish homes with those noble bandits that hid the Serranía de Ronda in Spain occupied by the French. It premiered on December 22, 1976 on TVE where it was broadcast for two years and was in charge of directors such as Rovira Veleta, Mario Camus, Romero Marchent or Pilar Miró, among others. A role that has marked him throughout his career. "Surely if I had not done the Algarrobo would not be the actor I am today," recalled the actor on numerous occasions.

    In television he is also known for his role in Farmacia de Guardia, where he played the role of Carlos, the boyfriend of Lourdes, the one in charge of the pharmacy. His career linked to television has lasted until recently. One of his last works has been his appearance in the production of Telecinco Sé quién eres.

    His career also came to the theater, where he highlights his role in the adaptation of The Son of the Bride with Tina Sáinz, performance in which he was proud in statements to EL PAÍS.

    De LUNA, Álvaro (Álvaro de Luna Blanco)
    Born:4/10/1935, Madrid, Madrid, Spain

    Alvaro de Luna’ westerns – actor:
    Torrejón City – 1962 (saloon patron)
    Gunmen of the Rio Grande – 1964 (Williams henchman)
    A Fistful of Dollars – 1964 (Rojo gang member)
    Hour of Death – 1964 (Burns)
    Minnesota Clay – 1964
    A Fistful of Knuckles – 1965 (Sergeant Black)
    In a Colt’s Shadow – 1965
    Kid Rodelo – 1965
    Seven Hours of Gunfire - 1965 (Utter)
    Shoot to Kill – 1965 (henchman)
    The Christmas Kid – 1966 (Burt Froelich) [as Al Luno]
    The Hellbenders – 1966 (Bixby)
    The Man from Nowhere – 1966 (Watch henchman)
    Navajo Joe – 1966 (Sancho Ramirez)
    Day of Anger – 1967 (Wild Jack henchman)
    For a Few Dollars More – 1967 (Paco)
    I Do Not Forgive... I Kill! – 1967 (outlaw)
    15 Scaffolds for a Killer – 1967 (deputy sheriff)
    For a Few Bullets More – 1967 (Aguador)
    Cemetery Without Crosses – 1968 (deputy)
    15 Scaffolds for a Killer – 1968 (deputy)
    I Do Not Forgive... I Kill! - 1968 (bandit)
    The Mercenary – 1968 (Ramón)
    Cemetery Without Crosses – 1969 (deputy sheriff)
    Sundance Cassidy and Butch the Kid – 1969 (Bad Jim henchman)
    Companeros! – 1970 (John’s henchman)       
    Sabata the Killer – 1970 (Garfield henchman)
    Sartana Kills Them All – 1970 (Patrick Kirby)
    Sonny and Jed – 1972 (sheriff)         
    Revenge of the Black Wolf - 1981

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  • 11/02/18--08:42: RIP Paul Beahm

  • Paul Garnett Beahm, 56, passed away on October 28, 2018 at his home in Raleigh, North Carolina.

    Dignity Memorial

    Paul was born on April 10, 1962 in Limestone, Maine to George and Noriko Beahm. He graduated from Denbigh High School in Newport News, Virginia. He married Abbey G. Beahm on September 4, 1994 in Waupaca, Wisconsin.

    He began his professional career as an insurance salesman for John Hancock, and subsequently worked as a carpenter. His passion, and the bulk of his professional life’s work, was in the TV and film industry. A member of Screen Actors Guild, Paul worked as a stunt technician, a stuntman, a prop maker, and general foreman. He was a stuntman Fear Factor for two seasons, and worked in various capacities on productions for HBO, NBC, and other networks. His motion picture credits included, among others, Windtalkers, Mortal Combat, Sommersby, The Last of the Mohicans, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

    A longtime resident of southern California, he later moved to Cary, North Carolina, permanently settling in nearby Raleigh.

    Predeceased by his parents, George and Noriko Beahm, Paul is survived by his wife Abbey, his son Seth, and daughter Hannah; his siblings (and spouses): Lucy (Robert), Nancy (Richard), Norma (David), Janet, George (Mary); and many nephews and nieces.

    He was an active member of Hope Community Church where he was actively involved with a small group program.

    The funeral service will be held at 3:00 PM on November 3, 2018 at Brown-Wynne Funeral Home, in Cary, North Carolina; Reverend Richard Purnell of Hope Community Church will officiate.

    Paul’s family wishes to extend their sincere thanks to the hospice center Transitions LifeCare, and New Hope Church.

    BEAHM, Paul (Paul Garnett Beahm)
    Born: 4/10/1962, Limestone, Maine, U.S.A.
    Died: 10/28/2018, Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.A.

    Paul Beahm’ westerns – stunt coordinator, stuntman actor:
    The Last of the Mohicans – 1992 [stunts]
    Sommersby – 1993 [stunt coordinator, stunts]
    Raven Hawk (TV) – 1996 (deputy)

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  • 11/02/18--08:51: RIP Raymond Chow

  • Godfather of HK film industry Raymond Chow dies at age 91

    The Straits Times
    By Claire Huang

    Mr Raymond Chow Man-wai, the man whose name was synonymous with gongfu legend and cultural icon Bruce Lee, has died at the age of 91.

    Known as the "godfather of the Hong Kong film industry", Mr Chow had been the one who introduced Bruce Lee to the world after the late gongfu star appeared on Hong Kong's popular variety show Enjoy Yourself Tonight.

    Long-time friend Robert Chua, widely known as the pioneer of terrestrial television in Hong Kong, told The Straits Times on Friday (Nov 2) that Mr Chow's death "is a loss to the film industry".

    "He brought Bruce to the world and, in turn, Hong Kong to the world," he said.

    Describing Mr Chow as soft spoken, down to earth and a gentleman, Mr Chua said: "I just find that unlike some people who are very active and gungho, he's very mild but also passionate."

    Born in 1927, Mr Chow began his professional life as a newspaper reporter before working as a radio and television producer for several years.

    In 1959, he joined the Shaw Brothers group and later held a key position in Run Run Shaw's empire.

    In 1970, he set up Golden Harvest with the late Leonard Ho Koon-cheung and started producing a series of acclaimed movies, including Fist of Fury, Police Story and The Private Eyes.

    In his career, Mr Chow also nurtured and groomed those who worked in front or behind the camera, including actors Jackie Chan, the Hui Brothers, Sammo Hung and film director John Woo.

    Digital news outlet HK01 said Mr Chow was in 1998 awarded the Gold Bauhinia Star by the government for his very distinguished service to the community.

    In 2007, he sold his shares in Golden Harvest and announced his retirement at age 81 in 2008, the same year he received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Hong Kong Film Awards.

    CHOW, Raymond (Raymond Chow Man-wai)
    Born: 10/8/1927, Hong Kong, British Crown Colony
    Died: 11/2/2018, Singapore, China

    Raymond Chow’s westerns – executive producer, producer:
    Death Wish – 1981 [executive producer]
    Shanghai Express – 1986 [producer]

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  • 11/02/18--11:46: RIP Ken Swofford

  • Twitter
    By Brandon Swofford
    My Grandpa, Ken Swofford passed away yesterday. Actor, Jokester, Baseball & Film Aficionado, Angry Polar Bear, A Great Father, Husband and Grandfather.

    Grateful for all the times we spent and we will miss you...

    SWOFFORD, Ken (Kenneth Charles Swofford)

    Born: 7/25/1933, Du Quoin, Illinois, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/1/2018


    Ken Swofford’s westerns – actor:

    The Big Valley (TV) – 1966 (Wes)
    Gunfight in Abilene– 1967 (Rebel soldier)
    Cimarron Strip (TV) – 1967 (Christie)
    Gunsmoke (TV) – 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975 (Bo Warrick, Sugar John, Guffy,Loomis, Brank, Harry, Speer, Dick, Harkey, Jake Fielder, Dunbar
    The Wild Wild West (TV) 1967 (Sloan)
    Daniel Boone (TV) – 1968 (Mick O’Toole)
    The Virginian (TV) – 1968, 1969 (Wrengell, Seth Pettit)
    Here Come the Brides (TV) – 1969 (janitor, Gil)
    The Outcasts (TV) – 1969 (Ramsey)
    The Intruders (TV) – 1970 (Pomerantz)
    Lancer (TV) – 1970 (Rufus)
    One Little Indian – 1973 (Pat Dixon)
    Dirty Sally (TV) – 1974 (sheriff)
    Kung Fu (TV) – 1974 (Dr. Tracer, Max Frazer)
    The Oregon Trail (TV) – 1977 (Cutler)
    How the West Was Won (TV) – 1979 (Grimes)
    Kenny Rogers as the Gambler: The Adventure Continues (TV) – 1983 (Wichita Pike)
    Gunsmoke to the Last Man (TV) – 1992 (Charlie Tewksbury)

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  • 11/02/18--11:57: RIP Stuart Z. Hirschman

  • Kansas City Star

    October 14, 2018


    Stuart Z. Hirschman, 84, of Kansas City, Missouri, passed away peacefully October 8, 2018. Generous, charming, funny, wise, adored and respected by so many, Stuart was a prolific story teller - and checker player. Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Stuart moved to Kansas Cityafter graduating MichiganUniversity. He went to LawSchoolat UMKC and practiced law since 1958. In addition to having been a partner at several law firms in both Kansas City and New York, he also expanded into other ventures, including producing a Hollywood movie, serving as Chairman and President of a Missouri bank, and was the General Partner in over thirty real estate properties. Stuart served in the United States Air Force and the USAF Reserve. His charitable roles included Kansas City Mayor's Commission on Human Rights, MenorahMedicalCenter's Board of Counselors, Board member on United Nations Habitat For Humanity Committee in New York City, Vice Chairman for Plain States Region of the Anti-Defamation League, Deputy Election Commissioner, Member Friends of Art of the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, and Patron for St. Luke's Hospital. After several years living in New York City, Stuart moved back to Kansas City in 1996 with his loving wife Suzi, where they were active leaders in social, administrative, and financial affairs of ParkwayTowers. Stuart battled Parkinson's for many years with Suzi as his sole caretaker. She passed away just 6 weeks ago. Those left to cherish his memory include, brother Steven Hirschman of Teaneck, NJ, children Shayle Hirschman of Scottsdale, AZ, David Hirschman (Karyn) of Los Angeles, CA, Batsheva (Yossie) Frankel of Los Angeles, CA, step children Keith (Lenore) Shapiro of N. Massapequa, NY, Maurie Comenzo of Phoenix, AZ, seven grandchildren Eve, Ben, Jack, Tuvia, Christopher, Jordyn and Skylar, and three great-grandchildren, Caila, Adele, and Jake, as well as numerous beloved family and friends. No services will be held at this time.

    HIRSCHMAN, Stuart Z.

    Born: 7/25/1934, Brooklyn, New York, U.S.A.
    Died: `10/8/2018, Kansas City, Missouri, U.S.A.


    Stuart Z. Hirschman’s western – actor:

    The Red, White, and Black – 1970 (paymaster)

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  • 11/03/18--09:23: RIP Greg Coale

  • The Capital Gazette
    November 3, 2018

    Gregory J. Coale passed away on November 1 at the age of 67. He was preceded in death by his parents Thomas J. Coale of Annapolis in 1989 and Ida C. (Homberg) Coale of Annapolis in 1994, and his brother Ronald B. Coale of Westminster in 1999. Gregory is survived by his wife Ellen Anne (Burke) Coale of Pasadena, brother Dennis G. Coale (Barbara) of Crownsville, and numerous other family and friends. Gregory was born in Annapolis on July 12, 1951. He was a graduate of St. Mary’s in Annapolis and completed his Bachelors degree at Salisbury State University. He worked with Social Security for 46 years. He also worked as a professional actor, and spent most of his free time acting. He performed in many plays and movies across the Baltimore, Washington and Annapolis area, including a role as Sheriff in the movie One Eyed Horse. Everyone always looked forward to seeing Greg in some role in the popular play A Christmas Carol. Greg was also a member of South River Bible Church in Davidsonville. A visitation will be held on Sunday November 4 from 7-9pm at Hardesty Funeral Home, P.A., 12 Ridgely Ave., Annapolis, MD 21401, where a funeral service will be held at 10am on Monday November 5. Interment to follow at Hillcrest Memorial Gardens in Annapolis. In lieu of flowers, donations are welcome to Hospice of the Chesapeake, 90 Ritchie Hwy., Pasadena, MD 21122.

    COALE, Greg (Gregory J. Coale)
    Born: 7/12/1951 Annapolis, Maryland, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/1/2018, Annapolis, Maryland, U.S.A.

    Greg Coale’s western – actor:
    One-Eyed Horse – 2008 (Sheriff Nathan Short)

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  • 11/04/18--18:46: RIP Eddie Foy III

  • Eddie Foy III

    The Donna Reed Foundation for the Performing Arts
    November 4, 2018

    Mr. Foy has been a casting director for 42 years with Columbia Pictures/Screen Gems, 20th Century Fox, the Disney Channel and Dick Clark Productions. He was Director of Casting for ABC and Vice President of Casting for NBC. His Credits include The Donna Reed Show, I Dream of Jeannie, The Poesidean Adventure, Mork and Mindy, The Monkees, Happy Days, Roots I and II, Shogun, Barney Miller, Happy Days, The Emmy Awards, and has been the Talent Producer for The Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon the past 35 years. He is currently the expert "on air" Casting Executive for the hit biographical series 90 Days in Hollywood. His most recent honor was his unanimous selection by the Academy of Television Arts and Science, Archives Division, as Outstanding Casting Director of the last 42 years for his contributions to the Advancement of Television Casting.

    FOY III, Eddie
    Born: 2/10/1935, New York City, New York, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/?/2018, Corona, California, U.S.A.

    Eddie Foy III’s westerns – actor, casting, casting director:
    Outlaw’s Son – 1957 (Ted Wentworth)
    When Legends Die – 1972 [studio casting]
    Dusty’s Trail - 1973 [casting director]
    The Hatfields and the McCoys – 1975 [casting director]
    The Wackiest Wagon Train in the West – 1976 [casting director]
    Young Pioneers (TV) - 1976 [casting director]
    Young Pioneers Christmas (TV) – 1976 [casting director]

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  • 11/05/18--06:41: RIP Robert Cleaves

  • Evins Funeral Home

    Robert Cleaves was born on December 7, 1928 in Massachusetts.

    He resided in Stockton, California and worked as an Actor in the entertainment industry for 40 years and served in the U.S. Armed Forces.

    Robert passed away on September, 9, 2017 at the age of 88.

    Funeral services are pending with the family.

    CLEAVES, Robert
    Born: 12/7/1928, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
    Died: 9/9/2017, Stockton, California, U.S.A.

    Robert Cleaves’ westerns – actor:
    Rawhide (TV) – 1965 (R.S. Riley)
    Bonanza (TV) – 1966 (Reverend Porter)
    The Outcasts (TV) – 1969 (doctor)
    There Was a Crooked Mile – 1970 (Grizzard)
    Bret Maverick (TV) – 1981 (crazy preacher)

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  • 11/08/18--19:02: RIP Francis Lai

  • Francis Lai, Oscar-winning 'Love Story' composer, dies at 86

    By Jon Burlingame
    November 8, 2018

    French composer Francis Lai, who won an Oscar for “Love Story” and penned the beguiling theme for “A Man and a Woman,” has died at the age of 86, the mayor of Nice announced on Wednesday. No cause of death was reported.

    Lai’s plaintive piano melody for “Love Story,” the 1970 tearjerker that made stars of Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw, was his biggest hit, earning him an Oscar and a Golden Globe. His soundtrack recording was all over radio in early 1971, reaching no. 37 as a single and no. 2 as a soundtrack album. When lyrics were added to the melody, Andy Williams sang “Where Do I Begin” to no. 7 on the charts that same year.

    The score almost didn’t happen. Lai initially turned down the assignment, he told the Los Angeles Times in 2001. But French actor Alain Delon, who had seen a cut of the film, called Lai and convinced him to delay his summer vacation.

    Delon and producer Robert Evans flew to Paris with a print, screened it for him and, said Lai, “I came out of the screening incredibly moved. I went straight home, sat at my keyboard and wrote that theme that very night.”

    Lai had already achieved a modicum of fame with his romantic theme for “A Man and a Woman,” French director Claude Lelouch’s art-house hit of 1966. The combination of Lai’s accordion and the wordless “da-ba-da-ba-da, da-ba-da-ba-da” vocals of a male-female duo struck a chord with record-buyers, propelling the soundtrack album to no. 10 on the American charts.

    Director Lelouch became Lai’s greatest champion, collaborating with the composer on nearly 40 projects — many of them romantic in nature — including “Live for Life” (1967), “Love Is a Funny Thing” (1969), “Happy New Year” 91973), “And Now My Love” (1974), “Another Man, Another Chance” (1977), “Bolero” (1981), “Edith and Marcel” (1983), “A Man and a Woman, 20 Years Later” (1986) and their final film together, last year’s “Everyone’s Life.”

    He worked for other English and French directors as well, scoring “I’ll Never Forget What’sisname” for Michael Winner (1967), “Mayerling” for Terence Young (1968), “Three into Two Won’t Go” for Peter Hall (1969), “Rider on the Rain” for Rene Clement (1970), “International Velvet” for Bryan Forbes (1978) and “Les cles du Paradis” for Philippe de Broca (1991). His albums for “Emmanuelle 2” (1975) and “Bilitis” (1977) were hits among European record-buyers.

    In all, he scored more than 100 films. His only work for American television was the TV-movie “Berlin Affair” (1970) and the Joan Collins miniseries “Sins” (1986), which sported a Carly Simon song written by Lai.

    Lai was born in Nice, played accordion and piano, and while he was still in his 20s, settled in Paris’s Montmartre district. He soon became accompanist to the legendary chanteuse Edith Piaf. He began writing songs for her as well, and his total song output is now said to exceed 600.

    Survivors include his wife and three children. The funeral is scheduled for Wednesday at 10 a.m. at the Cathedral Catherine Saint-Arson in Nice.

    “It is with great sadness that I learn of the death of Francis Lai, this great composer from Nice,” Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi reported. “I will soon propose to his family to give his name to an emblematic place of our city.” Added Gilles Jacob, former president of the Cannes Film Festival: “His melodies had a crazy charm.”

    LAI, Francis (Francis Albert Lai)
    Born: 4/26/1932, Nice, Alpes-Maritimes, France
    Died: 11/7/2018, Nice, Alpes-Maritimes, France

    Francis Lai’s westerns – composer:
    In the Dust of the Sun – 1971
         Song: "Sur notre etoile" sung by Francis Lai
    The Legend of Frenchie King – 1971
    Another Man, Another Chance – 1977

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  • 11/08/18--19:12: RIP Nick Bontempi

  • The Arizona Daily Star
    November 4, 2018

    BONTEMPI, Dominic Robert, 88, died 27th October 2018 peacefully at his home in Tucson, Arizona, after a brave battle with leukemia. "Nick", along with his twin brother Paul (who still resides in AZ), were born to Italian immigrants Vincenzo and Fortunata, who came to this country in search of a better life and settled in Cleveland, Ohio. There they raised Nick and Paul, along with their three older sisters, Theresa, Mary and Fern, all of whom predeceased them. Nick graduated Garfield Heights High School in 1937 and, at age 17, enlisted in the Marines, where he served with his brother for three years and forged many friendships which he maintained throughout his life. He was an expert with a .45 pistol and served briefly as a firearms instructor. Following the service, Nick embarked on a series of adventures, including uranium mining, boxing (Golden Glove), hairdressing, drafting and aerospace engineering. Nick also, along with brother Paul, studied acting and appeared in an episode of Steve McQueen's 'Wanted Dead or Alive' (Hero in the Dust, 1961) and an episode of 'The Red Skeleton Show', as well as two motion pictures, 'The Magic Sword' (1962) with Basil Rathbone, and 'Captain Newman, MD'. Nick studied hairdressing with the Cusenzas in Hollywood at the Sebastian School, and later joined Rocketdyne Corporation as a draftsman, where he worked on components of the Apollo missions, and was soon promoted to engineer. He then joined Hughes Aircraft, where he worked on several ballistics projects, including the AIM-54 Phoenix and the AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles. He retired from Hughes, becoming an avid golfer, a member of the Tucson East Elks, and friend to many canine companions, most recently Baby, who was always at his side. If one's life can be measured by how they are remembered, Nick had a full, fun and loving life and will be very missed. Nick is predeceased by his parents and sisters and his ex-wife, Jerrolyn Bontempi (Dolson) and survived by his brother, Paul; his children, Paul Lonardo (Judy), Dominique McLaughlin, Sarah Bontempi (George), Dr. Lisa Marie York and Chris Bontempi (Kristin), along with 11 grandchildren and many loving nieces and nephews. In lieu of a memorial service, as was his wishes, we are asking that donations be made to Nick's favorite charity, D.E.L.T.A. rescue, P.O. Box 9, Glendale, CA 91209. Arrangements by FUNERARIA DEL ANGEL

    BONTEMPI, Nick (Dominic Robert Bontempi)
    Born: 1/10/1930, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.A.
    Died: 10/27/2018, Tucson, Arizona, U.S.A.

    Wanted Dead or Alive (TV) – 1961 (Harry Weaver)

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  • 11/11/18--13:33: RIP Douglas Rain

  • Stratford Festival pioneer, Douglas Rain, dies at 90

    The Cochrane Times Post
    November 11, 2018

    Douglas Rain, a member of the Stratford Festival’s founding company, died early Sunday morning at the St. Marys Memorial Hospital at the age of 90.

    According to a Stratford Festival press release, Rain spent 32 seasons in Stratford, playing such roles as Malvolio in Twelfth Night (1957), Iago in Othello (1959), the title role in King John (1960), Cardinal Wolsey in Henry VIII (1961), Apemantus in Timon of Athens (1963), Ulysses in Troilus and Cressida (1963), Mr. Pinchwife in The Country Wife (1964), Edgar in King Lear (1964) and Sir Toby Belch in Twelfth Night (1966).

    “Canadian theatre has lost one of its greatest talents and a guiding light in its development,” said festival artistic director Antoni Cimolino in the press release. “Douglas Rain was that rare artist — an actor deeply admired by other actors. The voice of HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey, Douglas shared many of the same qualities as (Stanley) Kubrick’s iconic creation — precision, strength of steel, enigma and infinite intelligence, as well as a wicked sense of humour.

    “But those of us lucky enough to have worked with Douglas soon solved his riddle and discovered that at the centre of his mystery lay warmth and humanity, evidenced in his care for the young members of our profession. Douglas dedicated his talent to the stages of his native land, and we are proud in return to dedicate the coming season’s production of Othello to his memory. We owe him so much.”

    Born in Winnipeg in 1928, Rain performed as a child actor on CBC radio. He attended the University of Manitoba and afterwards travelled to London to study at the Old Vic Theatre School. He returned to Canada for the Festival’s inaugural season in 1953, playing the Marquis of Dorset and Tyrrell in Richard III, in which he also understudied Alec Guinness in the title role.

    Having performed on the festival stage until 1998, Rain also performed across Canada at the Manitoba Theatre Centre, the National Arts Centre, Toronto’s Tarragon Theatre, and the Shaw Festival, where he embodied such roles as Caesar in Caesar and Cleopatra (1983), Andrew Undershaft in Major Barbara (1987), and Captain Shotover in Heartbreak House (1985 and 1999). His U.K. credits include Hadrian VII, directed by Peter Dews (1968) and The Heretic, directed by Morris West (1970). He was nominated for a Tony Award for his role as William Cecil in Vivat!Vivat! Regina! in 1972. From 1974 to 1977, Rain was head of the English acting department at the National Theatre School of Canada.

    On top of voicing the iconic HAL in 2001: A Space Odyssey, Rain had more than a hundred television and film roles to his name, often working with director Eric Till. He also worked on hundreds of radio plays, many with the CBC, with directors Esse Ljungh and John Reeves, and lent his voiceover talents to the National Film Board of Canada on many occasions.

    Rain is survived by his two sons, David and Adam (with first wife Lois Shaw), his daughter Emma (with second wife Martha Henry), granddaughter, Salima, and daughter-in-law, Asira.

    RAIN, Douglas (Douglas James Rain)
    Born: 3/13/1928, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Died: 11/11/2018, St. Mary’s, Ontario, Canada

    Douglas Rain’s western – actor:
    Hudon Bay (TV) - 1959 (Martin Cobb)

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  • 11/12/18--14:47: RIP Stan Lee

  • Stan Lee, Marvel Comics' Real-Life Superhero, Dies at 95

    The Hollywood Reporter
    By Mike Barnes
    November 12, 2018

    The feisty writer, editor and publisher was responsible for such iconic characters as Spider-Man, the X-Men, Thor, Iron Man, Black Panther and the Fantastic Four — 'nuff said.

    Stan Lee, the legendary writer, editor and publisher of Marvel Comics whose fantabulous but flawed creations made him a real-life superhero to comic book lovers everywhere, has died. He was 95.

    Lee, who began in the business in 1939 and created or co-created Black Panther, Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Mighty Thor, Iron Man, the Fantastic Four, the Incredible Hulk, Daredevil and Ant-Man, among countless other characters, died early Monday morning at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, a family representative told The Hollywood Reporter.

    Kirk Schenck, an attorney for Lee's daughter, J.C. Lee, also confirmed his death.

    Lee's final few years were tumultuous. After Joan, his wife of 69 years, died in July 2017, he sued executives at POW! Entertainment — a company he founded in 2001 to develop film, TV and video game properties — for $1 billion alleging fraud, then abruptly dropped the suit weeks later. He also sued his ex-business manager and filed for a restraining order against a man who had been handling his affairs. (Lee's estate is estimated to be worth as much as $70 million.) And in June 2018, it was revealed that the Los Angeles Police Department had been investigating reports of elder abuse against him.

    n his own and through his work with frequent artist-writer collaborators Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko and others, Lee catapulted Marvel from a tiny venture into the world's No. 1 publisher of comic books and, later, a multimedia giant.

    In 2009, The Walt Disney Co. bought Marvel Entertainment for $4 billion, and most of the top-grossing superhero films of all time — led by Avengers: Infinity War's $2.05 billion worldwide take earlier this year — have featured Marvel characters.

    "I used to think what I did was not very important," he told the Chicago Tribune in April 2014. "People are building bridges and engaging in medical research, and here I was doing stories about fictional people who do extraordinary, crazy things and wear costumes. But I suppose I have come to realize that entertainment is not easily dismissed."

    Lee's fame and influence as the face and figurehead of Marvel, even in his nonagenarian years, remained considerable.

    How Stan Lee Broke Down the Barrier Between Audience and Artist

    “Stan Lee was as extraordinary as the characters he created," Disney chairman and CEO Bob Iger said in a statement. "A superhero in his own right to Marvel fans around the world, Stan had the power to inspire, to entertain and to connect. The scale of his imagination was only exceeded by the size of his heart."

    Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige also paid tribute. “No one has had more of an impact on my career and everything we do at Marvel Studios than Stan Lee," Feige said. "Stan leaves an extraordinary legacy that will outlive us all. Our thoughts are with his daughter, his family and the millions of fans who have been forever touched by Stan’s genius, charisma and heart.”

    Beginning in the 1960s, the irrepressible and feisty Lee punched up his Marvel superheroes with personality, not just power. Until then, comic book headliners like those of DC Comics were square and well-adjusted, but his heroes had human foibles and hang-ups; Peter Parker/Spider-Man, for example, fretted about his dandruff and was confused about dating. The evildoers were a mess of psychological complexity.

    "His stories taught me that even superheroes like Spider-Man and the Incredible Hulk have ego deficiencies and girl problems and do not live in their macho fantasies 24 hours a day," Gene Simmons of Kiss said in a 1979 interview. "Through the honesty of guys like Spider-Man, I learned about the shades of gray in human nature."

    (Kiss made it to the Marvel pages, and Lee had Simmons bleed into a vat of ink so the publisher could say the issues were printed with his blood.)

    The Manhattan-born Lee wrote, art-directed and edited most of Marvel's series and newspaper strips. He also penned a monthly comics column, “Stan's Soapbox,” signing off with his signature phrase, “Excelsior!”

    His way of doing things at Marvel was to brainstorm a story with an artist, then write a synopsis. After the artist drew the story panels, Lee filled in the word balloons and captions. The process became known as “The Marvel Method.”

    Lee collaborated with artist-writer Kirby on the Fantastic Four, Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, Silver Surfer and X-Men. With artist-writer Ditko he created Spider-Man and the surgeon Doctor Strange, and with artist Bill Everett came up with the blind superhero Daredevil.

    Stan Lee Needs a Hero: Elder Abuse Claims and a Battle Over the Aging Marvel Creator

    Such collaborations sometimes led to credit disputes: Lee and Ditko reportedly engaged in bitter fights, and both receive writing credit on the Spider-Man movies and TV shows. "I don't want anyone to think I treated Kirby or Ditko unfairly," he told Playboy magazine in April 2014. "I think we had a wonderful relationship. Their talent was incredible. But the things they wanted weren't in my power to give them."

    Like any Marvel employee, Lee had no rights to the characters he helped create and received no royalties.

    In the 1970s, Lee importantly helped push the boundaries on censorship in comics, delving into serious and topical subject matter in a medium that had become mindless, kid-friendly entertainment.

    In 1954, the publication of psychologist Frederic Wertham's book Seduction of the Innocent had spurred calls for the government to regulate violence, sex, drug use, questioning of public authority figures, etc., in the comics as a way to curtail "juvenile delinquency." Wary publishers headed that off by forming the Comics Code Authority, a self-censoring body that while avoiding the heavy hand of Washington still wound up neutering adult interest in comics and stereotyping the medium as one only kids would enjoy.

    Lee scripted banal scenarios with characters like Nellie the Nurse and Tessie the Typist, but in 1971, he inserted an anti-drug storyline into "The Amazing Spider-Man” in which Peter Parker's best friend Harry Osborn popped pills. Those issues, which did not carry the CCA "seal of approval" on the covers, became extremely popular, and later, the organization relaxed some of its guidelines.

    Born Stanley Martin Lieber on Dec. 28, 1922, he grew up poor in Washington Heights, where his father, a Romanian immigrant, was a dress-cutter. A lover of adventure books and Errol Flynn movies, Lee graduated from DeWitt Clinton High School, joined the WPA Federal Theatre Project, where he appeared in a few stage shows, and wrote obituaries.

    In 1939, Lee got a job as a gofer for $8 a week at Marvel predecessor Timely Comics. Two years later, for Kirby and Joe Simon's Captain America No. 3, he wrote a two-page story titled "The Traitor's Revenge!" that was used as text filler to qualify the company for the inexpensive magazine mailing rate. He used the pen name Stan Lee.

    He was named interim editor at 19 by publisher Martin Goodman when the previous editor quit. In 1942, he enlisted in the Army and served in the Signal Corps, where he wrote manuals and training films with a group that included Oscar-winner Frank Capra, Pulitzer-winner William Saroyan and Theodor Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss). After the war, he returned to the publisher and served as the editor for decades.

    Following DC Comics' lead with the Justice League, Lee and Kirby in November 1961 launched their own superhero team, the Fantastic Four, for the newly renamed Marvel Comics, and Hulk, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, Daredevil and X-Men soon followed. The Avengers launched as its own title in September 1963.

    Perhaps not surprisingly, Manhattan's high-literary culture vultures did not bestow its approval on how Lee was making a living. People would “avoid me like I had the plague. … Today, it's so different,” he once told The Washington Post.

    Not everyone felt the same way, though. Lee recalled once being visiting in his New York office by Federico Fellini, who wanted to talk about nothing but Spider-Man.

    In 1972, Lee was named publisher and relinquished the Marvel editorial reins to spend all his time promoting the company. He moved to Los Angeles in 1980 to set up an animation studio and to build relationships in Hollywood. Lee purchased a home overlooking the Sunset Strip that was once owned by Jack Benny's announcer, Don Wilson.

    Long before his Marvel characters made it to the movies, they appeared on television. An animated Spider-Man show (with a memorable theme song composed by Oscar winner Paul Francis Webster, of "The Shadow of Your Smile" fame, and Bob Harris) ran on ABC from 1967 to 1970. Bill Bixby played Dr. David Banner, who turns into a green monster (Lou Ferrigno) when he gets agitated, in the 1977-82 CBS drama The Incredible Hulk. And Pamela Anderson provided the voice of Stripperella, a risque animated Spike TV series that Lee wrote for in 2003-04.

    Lee launched the internet-based Stan Lee Media in 1998, and the superhero creation, production and marketing studio went public a year later. However, when investigators uncovered illegal stock manipulation by his partners, the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2001. (Lee was never charged.)

    In 2002, Lee published an autobiography, Excelsior! The Amazing Life of Stan Lee.

    Survivors include his daughter and younger brother Larry Lieber, a writer and artist for Marvel. Another daughter, Jan, died in infancy. His wife, Joan, was a hat model whom he married in 1947.

    "J.C. Lee and all of Stan Lee's friends and colleagues want to thank all of his fans and well-wishers for their kind words and condolences," a family statement read. "Stan was an icon in his field. His fans loved him and his desire to interact with them. He loved his fans and treated them with the same respect and love they gave him."

    "He worked tirelessly his whole life creating great characters for the world to enjoy. He wanted to inspire our imagination and for us to all use it to make the world a better place. His legacy will live on forever."

    Like Alfred Hitchcock before him, the never-bashful Lee appeared in cameos in the Marvel movies, shown avoiding falling concrete, watering his lawn, delivering the mail, crashing a wedding, playing a security guard, etc.

    In Spider-Man 3 (2007), he chats with Tobey Maguire's Peter Parker as they stop on a Times Square street to read news that the web-slinger will soon receive the key to the city. “You know," he says, "I guess one person can make a difference … 'nuff said.”

    LEE, Stan (Stanley Martin Lieber on
    Born: 12/281922, Manhattan, New York, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/12/2018, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

    Stan Lee’s westerns – comic book editor:
    Wild Western – 1948-1957 [editor]
    Two-Gun Kid – 1948-1957 [editor]
    Rawhide Kid – 1955-1957 [editor]

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  • 11/13/18--15:43: RIP Wayne Maunder

    By Vicki L. Nelson

    It is with a heavy heart that I announce that the last of the Lancers, Wayne Maunder (Scott Lancer) passed away yesterday from a heart attack. He was also the star of "Custer."

    Wayne Maunder was born in New Brunswick, Canada, but grew up in Bangor, Maine. After a year at Compton Jr. College near L. A., where he had ideas of being a psychiatrist, he instead entered a drama workshop. Moving to New York, he studied in Stella Adler’s group for two years and found work in stock companies and American Shakespeare companies. A theatrical agent saw him and signed him to a contract which eventually led to three American television series between 1967 and 1974. From September 6 to December 27, 1967, Maunder starred as 28-year-old Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer (1839–1876), during the time that Custer was stationed in the American West. The program, Custer, aired on ABC at 7:30 Eastern on Wednesday, opposite NBC's established western, The Virginian starring James Drury and Doug McClure. The program ended after seventeen episodes. Maunder told TV GUIDE in 1970, “My character never developed. I had ideas going in, but nothing happened. You try to be a nice guy, and you see your work suffer.”
    Maunder's next series was a second western, CBS's Lancer, with co-stars Andrew Duggan, James Stacy, and Paul Brinegar. Lancer ran from 1968 to 1970, with an additional rebroadcast cycle in the summer of 1971.

    Maunder's last regular series, Chase, was a 21-episode drama about an undercover police unit which aired on NBC during the 1973-1974 television season, co-starring Mitchell Ryan as Chase Reddick and Reid Smith as officer Norm Hamilton. Maunder played the role of police Sergeant Sam MacCray, one of whose duties was to handle the police dog named "Fuzz". A Jack Webb production, Chase was created by Stephen J. Cannell.

    Maunder resided in the Greater Los Angeles Area. In 1967, Maunder was married the former Lucia Maisto. The couple's son, Dylan T. Maunder, was born the next year in 1968. Dylan died on April 28, 2005 from a drug overdose at age 36.

    MAUNDER, Wayne (Wayne Ernest Maunder)
    Born: 12/19/1937, Four Falls, New Brunswick, Canada
    Died: 11/11/2018, West Hollywood, California, U.S.A.

    Wayne Maunder’s westerns – actor:
    The Munroes (TV) – 1967 (Michael Duquesne)
    Custer (TV) – 1968 (Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer)
    Crazy Horse and Custer: The Untold Story (TV) – 1968
    The Legend of Custer (TV) (Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer)
    Lancer (TV) – 1968-1970 (Scott Lancer)
    Kung Fu (TV) – 1972 (McKay)

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  • 11/14/18--06:47: RIP James Greene

  • Debuting on Broadway 1951, he acted in Lincoln Center Rep and APA-Phoenix Rep at the start of a long New York and regional career.

    American Theater
    November 13, 2018

    James Greene, a character actor with an illustrious stage career perhaps best known for his four-year stint on TV’s “The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd,” died on Nov. 9 at his home in Los Angeles. He was 91.

    His death was confirmed by his wife, Els Collins. James had been a successful working actor for more than 70 years. Born James Thomas Nolan in Lawrence, Ma., on Dec. 1, 1926 to Tim and Martha Nolan, he graduated from Emerson College in 1950.

    He made his Broadway debut in 1951 in Romeo and Juliet starring Olivia de Havilland. Between that debut and his last appearance on Broadway in 1991, in David Hirson’s play La Bête, he appeared in 22 Broadway plays and 29 Off-Broadway. Highlights included two productions of The Iceman Cometh, with Jason Robards and directed by José Quintero, and Foxfire, with Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn. He was an original member of the Lincoln Center Repertory Company under the leadership of Elia Kazan and Robert Whitehead.

    He also spent four years with the APA-Phoenix Repertory Theatre at Broadway’s Lyceum Theatre. There he worked with Ellis Rabb and T. Edward Hambleton, performing in New York as well as doing two lengthy tours, one with Helen Hayes in George Kelly’s The Show-Off and another with Brian Bedford in Molière’s School for Wives. He performed regionally at Chicago’s Goodman Theatre (Otherwise Engaged), Baltimore’s Center Stage and Yale Repertory Theatre (Slavs), New Haven’s Long Wharf Theatre (Oliver Oliver), Seattle’s Intiman Theatre (The Weir and Molly Sweeney), San Diego’s Old Globe (Burning Hope), Boston’s Huntington Theatre (The Birthday Party), and Hartford’s Center Stage (Desire Under the Elms).

    His most recent television appearances were in “Parks and Recreation” as Councilman Milton, “Modern Family,” “Cold Case,” and “Las Vegas.” His films include Road to Perdition, Patch Adams, The Hustler, The Lincoln Conspiracy, The Missouri Breaks, and The Philadelphia Experiment II.

    He is the author of A View from the Wings, a Theatre Memoir, self-published at age 90. Actor Hal Holbrook wrote the foreword to the book, in which he wrote, “Jimmie Greene’s trip from the Colonial top balcony has taken him from Off-Broadway to Broadway to Hollywood—the whole route an actor travels if he just keeps at it because that’s all he wants to do. Act.”

    He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Elsbeth M. Collins, son Christopher Nolan Collins, and grandchild Skylar. In addition to his son, he is survived by his stepson, Frank Askin. The family has no immediate plans for a memorial and asks for donations to the Actors’ Fund (Los Angeles 888-825-0911) in his memory.

    GREENE, James (James Thomas Nolan)
    Born: 12/1/1926, Lawrence, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/9/2018, Los Angeles, California, U.S.A.

    James Greene’s westerns – actor:
    John Brown's Raid (TV) - 1960
    The Traveling Executioner (TV) – 1970 (Gravey Combs)
    Doc  - 1971 (Frank McLowery)
    Nichols (TV) – 1971 (Lou Feeny)
    The Missouri Breaks - 1976 (Hellsgate rancher)
    The Quest (TV) – 1976 (Ollie)
    Kenny Rogers as The Gambler, Part III: The Legend Continues (TV) - 1987
    The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. (TV) – 1993 (Cartwright)
    A Father for Charlie (TV) – 1995 (Sam)

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  • 11/14/18--09:55: RIP Katherine MacGregor

  • 'Little House on the Prairie' star Katherine MacGregor dies at 93

    She had been retired and living at the Motion Picture and Television Fund's home in California.

    By Randee Dawn
    November 14, 2018

    Katherine "Scottie" MacGregor, best known for her role as Harriet Oleson on "Little House on the Prairie," died Tuesday in Woodland Hills, California, her representative confirmed to NBC News. She was 93.

    MacGregor played the gossipy, mean-spirited Harriet Oleson for 153 episodes of the popular 1970s series. On the show, she and her daughter Nellie (Alison Arngrim) served as the sour foils to the wholesome Ingalls, including Pa (Michael Landon) and Laura (Melissa Gilbert).

    Born Dorlee Deane MacGregor in 1925 in Glendale, California, MacGregor grew up in Colorado and changed her name to "Scottie" after relocating to New York, where she received applause for her theatrical roles. She moved to California and appeared in 1954's "On the Waterfront" in an uncredited role, then began to work in television on shows like "Ironside,""Emergency!" and "Mannix."

    "It was a rude awakening coming to Hollywood," she told the Santa Cruz Sentinel in 1981, according to the "Little House on the Prairie" official website. "I was used to doing juicy parts on the stage ... They didn’t know what to do with me."

    Then came the role that would define her career.

    "I was getting ready to go back to New York and my agent called and said, 'Could you go see somebody this afternoon?'" the official website reports. "And I said, 'Who did you say I'm supposed to meet?' She said, 'Michael Landon.' And I said, 'Well, who's he?'"

    The role of Mrs. Oleson (who contrasted with her more mild-mannered husband Nels, played by Richard Bull) made her famous, though she told the Santa Cruz Sentinel that she looked for ways to make her more than just "black-and-white mean."

    "Anyone that mean has to be a fool," she said. "So I began mixing farce into it."

    Ultimately, she was unable to film the final episode in the series in 1983; she was on pilgrimage in India at the time, focusing on her Hindu faith.

    Her co-star Melissa Gilbert posted on Instagram about MacGregor's passing, noting: "The thing people outside of our prairie family didn’t know, was how loving and nurturing she was with the younger cast."

    MacGregor was married twice for brief times; she wed Edward G. Kaye-Martin in 1969, and divorced him the following year. She was also married to actor Bert Remsen in 1949.

    She had been living at the Motion Picture Fund Long Term Nursing Care facility in Woodland Hills, California, when she died. One of her fellow residents had been Bull; when he died in 1999, she had lunch with his widow, Barbara Collentine. "Little House" actor Dean Butler said that afterward, MacGregor reported "they both had lost a wonderful husband."

    MacGREGOR, Katherine (Dorlee Deane MacGregor)
    Born: 1/12/1925, Glendale, California, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/13/2018, Woodland Hills, California, U.S.A.

    Katherine MacGregor’s westerns – actress:
    The Traveling Executioner – 1970 (Alice Thorn)
    Little House on the Prairie (TV) – 1974-1983 (Harriet Oleson)

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  • 11/15/18--07:50: RIP Morten Grunwald

  • Morten Grunwald is dead

    November 15, 2018

    Morten Grunwald is best known for the films about the Olsen band.  But the theater was close to him too.  He was 83 years old.

    Actor Morten Grunwald slept quietly Wednesday evening after a small day's hospitalization at Sankt Lukas hospice.  A long course of cancer has taken place before.

    Morten Grunwald had won a lot of prizes and participated in more than 50 films, probably the most famous for the 14 of the Olsen bands.

    With yellow socks, a goose's goose and the reply 'Skide goed Egon', Morten Grunwald made the Danes known with the ever-optimistic Benny in the Olsen band.

    The 14 'Olsen-band' film was made for Grunwald from 1968 to 1998.

    Although it's the role of Benny, who made him known and loved, he also had roles in a number of other feature films, TV shows and theater shows in his more than 55 year career.

    However, he had never concealed the fact that the 'Olsen bands' films have a special meaning.  He had never been sad that people have dunked him in the back and said 'Hey Benny' - on the contrary.

    Which Olsen Banden movie is your favorite?

    It was also during these films that he had a close relationship with both Poul Bundgaard and Ove Sprogøe, who formed the rest of the band.

    In connection with the 50th anniversary of the first 'Olsen band' film, Morten Grunwald again recounted that comedy films about the three criminals have filled a lot.  "Obviously, that's something I've been very happy and grateful for - and proud of-having helped," said Grunwald.

    He played in the act when he entered the school of the Aarhus Teaterskole in 1956. The last part of the student day took place in Copenhagen, where he in 1962 also got one of his first major roles in the 'Billy Løgneren' and at the same time began his career on film and on television.

    In 1965, he got a Bodil for his role in 'Fem man and Rosa', and in 1968 he became famous at the time when the first story about the 'Olsen bands' hit the Danish cinemas.

    The role did not prevent him from turning his eyes in other directions, and in 1971 he became director of the Bristol Theater in Copenhagen, where his wife, Lily Weiding, was also affiliated.

    In 1980 he continued to Alléscenen, renamed the Betty Nansen Theater.

    Morten Grunwald sat for 12 years in the executive chair before joining Østre Gasværk, where he put up the musical successes 'Les Miserables' and 'Miss Saigon'.

     In 1998 he decided to stop as busy and stressed theater director.  He gave up his job and did something about his lifestyle with too much food and drink at all times of the day.  It meant 40 fewer kilos and that he could again fit the pants from the first 'Olsen band' movie.

    After a long break, Grunwald returned to the film studio, and in 2008 he was rewarded with a Bodil for his efforts in the movie 'White Night'.

    The last time he was seen in the cinema, was in 2014, where he appered in the movie 'Silent Heart' and played a husband for a woman - played by Ghita Nørby who, due to incurable illness, will commit suicide.

    In 2017 he retired from the theater.

    For a while, he also served as a film consultant for feature film at the Danish Film Institute.

    Morten Grunwald lived since 1965 with Lily Weiding, whom he married in 1980. Together they have Tanja, the wife's two daughters from a former marriage.

    In mid-October, Grunwald he was told he had cancer.

    GRUNWALD, Morten (Walter Morten Grunwald)
    Born: 12/9/1934, Odense, Denmark
    Died: 11/14/2018, Hellerup, Denmark

    Morten Grunwald’ western – actor:
    Wilde West (TV) – 1965 (Chuck Cooper)

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  • 11/15/18--10:49: RIP Roy Clark

  • Roy Clark, ‘Hee Haw’ Host, Dies at 85

    November 15, 2018

    Roy Clark, a country music star and former host of the long-running TV series “Hee Haw,” died Thursday, his publicist told CNN.

    He was 85.

    Clark died of complications from pneumonia at his home in Tulsa, Oklahoma, according to publicist Sandy Brokaw.

    Raised in Washington D.C., the guitarist and banjo player began his musical career as a young teen. He made his first appearance at the Grand Ole Opry at age 17.

    Band gigs led to television appearances on “The Tonight Show,” and “American Bandstand”.

    In 1969, Clark and Buck Owens were tapped to co-host “Hee Haw.” The country music and comedy show aired in syndication for more than two decades, with Clark as host or co-host its entire run.

    In a tribute to Clark sent by his representatives, they shared some quotes from the country star about his career.

    “A TV camera goes right through your soul,” Clark said of his screen work. “If you’re a bad person, people pick that up. I’m a firm believer in smiles. I used to believe that everything had to be a belly laugh. But I’ve come to realize that a real sincere smile is mighty powerful.”

    With hits like “The Tips of My Fingers” and “Yesterday, When I Was Young,” Clark was one of the first cross-over artists to land singles on both the country and pop charts.

    In 1982, Clark won a Grammy for best country instrumental performance for “Alabama Jubilee.” He was a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Grand Ole Opry

    “Soon as you hit the edge of the stage and see people smiling and know they’re there to hear you, it’s time to have fun,” Clark once said about performing. “I keep a band of great young people around me, and we’re not musically restrained. It’s not about ‘let’s do it correct’ but ‘let’s do it right.'”

    Clark ended each of his performances with a humorous note of appreciation, “We had to come, but you had a choice. Thanks for being here.”

    He is survived by extensive family and his wife of 61 years, Barbara.

    A memorial celebration is planned in Tulsa in the coming days, according to Clark’s representative.

    CLARK, Roy (Roy Linwood Clark)
    Born: 4/15/1933, Meherrin, Virginia, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/15/2018, Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.A.

    Roy Clark’s westerns – actor:
    Up Hill All the Way – 1986 (Ben Hooker) [singer]
    Palo Pinto Gold - 2009 (storyteller)

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  • 11/16/18--07:07: RIP William Goldman

  • William Goldman Dies; Oscar Winning Writer Of ‘Butch Cassidy And The Sundance Kid’ Was 87

    Deadline Hollywood
    By Mike Fleming Jr.
    November 16, 2018

    I have been informed by friends of the family that William Goldman died last night. He was 87. Goldman, who twice won screenwriting Oscars for All The President’s Men and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, passed away last night in his Manhattan home, surrounded by family and friends. His health had been failing for some time, and over the summer his condition deteriorated.

    Goldman began as a novelist and transitioned to writing scripts with Masquerade in 1965. While his greatest hits were the indelible pairing of Robert Redford with Paul Newman in the George Roy Hill-directed Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, and Redford and Dustin Hoffman in the Alan Pakula-directed toppling of President Richard Nixon drama All The President’s Men, he wrote the scripts for many other great movies. The list includes the Hoffman-starrer Marathon Man, as well as The Princess Bride, Flowers For Algernon, The Stepford Wives, The Great Waldo Pepper, A Bridge Too Far, Chaplin and Misery. He also did a lot of behind the scenes script doctoring without taking a screen credit, as on films that included A Few Good Men and Indecent Proposal.

    Beyond that, Goldman was a renowned memoirist. His travelogue through the movie business, Adventures In The Screen Trade, was a primer for wannabe screenwriters and for journalists covering them. When I first got to Variety about 30 years ago, veteran reporters there told me Adventures was the best book to understand the chaos, randomness, the headaches, futility and joy of the movie business. Goldman is probably best known for his apt description of Hollywood: “Nobody knows anything.” I still have the book on my shelf.

    There will be people better versed to describe the fact that Goldman knew more than many, but I will recount an anecdote that the late Jonathan Demme told me when I did a look back on the 25th anniversary of the making of The Silence of the Lambs. Demme had the picture locked, and had a friends and family screening of the film before he turned in the cut. One of the attendees was Goldman, whom Demme didn’t know all that well. The following day, Goldman called. Well, better to let Demme tell it:

    “We watched the movie,” Demme said. “It played like gangbusters, and we got terrific response from the audience. Craig [McKay, the film’s editor] and I were high-fiving each other. Okay, we’re locked, baby. I got a phone call the next day at my house. ‘Hi, this is William Goldman calling.’ I was like, ‘Oh, hi. God, one of my favorite writers of all time.’ He said he thought the picture was terrific, but he thought there was one section that was holding it back from its full potential power. This came after Dr. Lecter escapes, and there was this scene that took somewhere between eight and twelve minutes. Jack Crawford is called on the carpet. They are summoned by the attorney general, who was played by Roger Corman. Crawford’s kicked off the case. Clarice is kicked out of the academy. They go downstairs, and there’s this blistering, really terrific scene on the steps. Clarice just can’t let go of saving the senator’s daughter. Her brain is going a mile a minute, and Crawford is telling her, ‘Didn’t you hear what happened up there? I’m off the case. You’re out of this thing. There’s no way on earth…’ But she said she was going to Calumet. Clarice looks at Crawford and says, ‘God Dammit Jack, I’m going.’ We cut to her in the car, crossing the bridge where she’s about to encounter Buffalo Bill. So Goldman said, ‘Take all that out.’ I’m like, ‘What? That’s one of the biggest scenes in the movie. Really? What?’ And he says, ‘That’s what my gut’s telling me. You guys should really take a look at it.’ So I was like, ‘Well, listen, thank you for this. Goodbye.’

    “I got to the cutting room and told Craig about this conversation, almost laughing about it. Craig was not really pleased because we were really…locked. But we said, let’s just take that section out, and watch the movie again, right here on the Steenbeck in the cutting room. So we lifted it out, watched it. And the power of just going to Jodie without all that other stuff…I think Goldman might’ve called it ‘the third act launchpad exposition stuff.’ It was just an extraordinary difference, an immeasurable improvement. That is William Goldman.”

    GOLDMAN, William
    Born: 8/12/1931, Highland Park, Illinois, U.S.A.
    Died: 11/15/2018, Manhattan, New York, U.S.A.

    William Goldman’s westerns – writer:
    Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid – 1969
    Butch and Sundance: The Early Days – 1979
    Mr. Horn (TV) – 1979
    Maverick - 1994

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