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Archive for October, 2019

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Betty Lou Keim

Betty Lou Kiem

Betty Lou Keim obituary in “Hollywood Reporter” in 2010.

Betty Lou Keim, who played Frank Sinatra’s out-of-control niece in the 1958 melodrama “Some Came Running,” died Jan. 27 at her home in Chatsworth, Calif., after a battle with lung cancer. She was 71.

Keim also portrayed a daughter having trouble communicating with her divorced mom Ginger Rogers in “Teenage Rebel” (1956) after performing the role a year earlier opposite Patricia Neal in the Broadway version, “A Roomful of Roses.”

In her early 20s and at the height of her young career, Keim married actor Warren Berlinger in 1959 and retired from show business to raise a family.

In a rarity, Keim had a contract with two studios, MGM and Fox. She made “These Wilder Years” (1956) with Barbara Stanwyck and James Cagney, “Wayward Bus” (1957) and “Some Came Running” during this period.

A native of Malden, Mass., Keim appeared on Broadway in “Strange Fruit” and then “Crime and Punishment” with John Gielgud before landing a key role in the Johnny Mercer 1949 musical “Texas Li’l Darlin’.”

On early television, Keim appeared on such shows as “My Son Jeep” and “The Philco Television Playhouse.” Her last acting job was in “The Deputy,” a Henry Fonda TV series that ran 1959-61.

In addition to Berlinger — who also appeared in “Roomful of Roses” and “Teenage Rebel” — Keim is survived by children Lisa, David, Edward and Elizabeth and eight grandchildren.

Donations in her name can be made to the Red Cross or the Motion Picture & Television Fund.

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Kathleen Hughes

Kathleen Hughes. Wikipedia

Kathleen Hughes (born Elizabeth Margaret von Gerkan; November 14, 1928) is an American film, stage, and television actress.

Hughes’ uncle, F. Hugh Herbert, was a playwright who authored Kiss and Tell and The Moon is Blue. Her desire to act was inspired by a film she saw featuring Donald O’Connor, which gave her the idea that “acting looked like fun.”

She was discovered in a Little Theater production in 1948. Signed to a seven-year contract with 20th Century Fox, she made 14 films for the studio. She appeared in five motion pictures for Universal Studios, including the cult film It Came From Outer Space. Released on May 27, 1953, the sci-fi feature was adapted from the writing of Ray Bradbury. It was Universal’s first entry into the 3D-film medium. Hughes co-starred with Edward G. Robinson in a 1953 crime drama, The Glass Web, and opposite Rock Hudson in an adventure film that year, The Golden Blade.

By 1956, she was appearing in television series. She played in episodes of Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1956–1957), Telephone Time (1956), The Bob Cummings Show (1958), The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet77 Sunset Strip (1959), Hotel de Paree (1959), Tightrope (1959), General Electric Theater (1960–1962), The Tall Man (1961), Bachelor Father (1962), Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. (1965), and I Dream of Jeannie (1967).

In 1962, Hughes played the role of murder victim Lita Krail in the sixth-season 1962 episode of  Perry Mason, entitled “The Case of the Double-Entry Mind”. She played the recurring role of Mrs. Coburn on the television series The Ghost & Mrs. Muir. She appeared on M*A*S*H as Lorraine Blake, wife of unit commander Henry Blake, in a home movie she sent to him. Hughes portrayed Mitch, a secretary, on the NBC drama Bracken’s World (1969-1971).

Hughes’ favorite stage role was in the play Seven Year Itch.

On July 25, 1954, Hughes married Stanley Rubin, the producer of Bracken’s World, at the home of her uncle. The couple has one daughter and three sons. The marriage lasted 59 years, until Rubin died on March 2, 2014 from natural causes at the age of 96.

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Geoff Hinsliff

Geoff Hinsliffe

Geoffrey Hinsliff (born 1937 in LeedsWest Riding of Yorkshire) is an English actor best known for his portrayal of Don Brennan in Coronation Street from 1987 to 1997. He had previously played other characters in the same programme, in 1963 and 1977.

He originally trained at RADA, before making his television debut in an episode of Z-Cars. He went on to appear in Adam Adamant Lives!Dixon of Dock GreenUFOCrown CourtThe Professionals and Heartbeat, and also played a wireless operator in the film A Bridge Too Far. He also had a role in the comedy-drama Brass and appeared in two Doctor Who stories: Image of the Fendahl and Nightmare of Eden. He guest-starred in Holby City as an alcoholic in 2010.

His daughter is the political journalist Gaby Hinsliff.

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Suzan Ball

Suzan Ball. Wikipedia.

Suzan Ball (February 3, 1934 – August 5, 1955) was an American actress. She was a second cousin of fellow actress Lucille Ball. She was married to actor Richard Long. She had her leg amputated in January 1954, as a result of both a tumour and an accident she had. She died at age 21 of cancer in 1955, after a two-year battle.

Born in Jamestown, New York, Ball was the eldest daughter of Howard and Marleah Ball.

Ball married Richard Long on April 4, 1954, at El Montecito Presbyterian Church in Santa Barbara. Many celebrities attended including Jeff ChandlerRock HudsonTony CurtisJanet Leigh, and David Janssen.

In 1953, doctors diagnosed Ball with cancer when she developed tumours on her legs, forcing her to use crutches. The cancer forced doctors to amputate Ball’s leg. She died in 1955, at the age of 21, at the City of Hope Hospital.

She is interred at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Glendale, California.

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Topol

Topol. Wikipedia

Chaim Topol (Hebrew: חיים טופול‎, born September 9, 1935), also  known as Topol, is an Israeliactor, singer, comedian, voice artist, film producer, author, and illustrator. He is best known for his portrayal of Tevye the Dairyman, the lead role in the musical Fiddler on the Roof, on both stage and screen, having performed this role more than 3,500 times in shows and revivals from the late 1960s through to 2009.

Topol began his acting career during his Israeli army service in the Nahal entertainment troupe, and later toured Israel with kibbutz theatre and satirical theatre companies. He was a co-founder of the Haifa Theatre. His breakthrough film role came in 1964 as the title character in Sallah Shabati, by Israeli writer Ephraim Kishon, for which he won a Golden Globe for Most Promising Newcomer—Male. Topol went on to appear in more than 30 films in Israel and the United States, including Galileo (1975), Flash Gordon (1980) and For Your Eyes Only(1981). He was described as Israel’s only internationally recognized entertainer from the 1960s through 1980s. He won a Golden Globe for Best Actor and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor for his 1971 film portrayal of Tevye, and was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor for a 1991 Broadway revival of Fiddler on the Roof.

He is a founder of Variety Israel, an organization serving children with special needs, and Jordan River Village, a year-round camp for Arab and Jewish children with life-threatening illnesses, for which he serves as chairman of the board. In 2015 he was awarded the Israel Prize for lifetime achievement.

Topol was born on September 9, 1935 in Tel Aviv, in what was then Mandatory Palestine (now Israel). His father, Jacob Topol, had immigrated to Mandatory Palestine from Russia in the early 1930s and worked as a plasterer; His mother, Rel (née Goldman) Topol, was a seamstress. Although the young Chaim wanted to become a commercial artist, his elementary school teachers saw a theatrical side to him, and encouraged him to act in school plays and read stories to the class.

At age 14 he began working as a printer at the Davar newspaper while pursuing his high school studies at night. He graduated high school at age 17 and moved to Kibbutz Geva. A year later, he enlisted in the Israeli army and became a member of the Nahal entertainment troupe, singing and acting in traveling shows.  He rose in rank to troupe commander.

Twenty-three days after being discharged from military service on October 2, 1956, and two days after marrying Galia Finkelstein, a fellow Nahal troupe member, Topol was called up for reserve duty in the Sinai Campaign. He performed for soldiers stationed in the desert. After the war, he and his wife settled in Kibbutz Mishmar David, where Topol worked as a garage mechanic.  Topol assembled a kibbutz theatre company made up of friends from his Nahal troupe; the group toured four days a week, worked on their respective kibbutzim for two days a week, and had one day off. The theatre company was in existence from early 1957 to the mid-1960s. Topol both sang and acted with the group, doing both “loudly”.

Between 1960 and 1964, Topol performed with the Batzal Yarok (“Green Onion”) satirical theatre company, which also toured Israel.  Other members of the group included Uri ZoharNechama HendelZaharira HarifaiArik Einstein, and Oded Kotler. In 1960, Topol co-founded the Haifa Municipal Theatre with Yosef Milo, serving as assistant to the director and acting in plays by Shakespeare, Ionesco, and Brecht. In 1965 he performed in the Cameri Theatre in Tel Aviv.

Topol’s sketch of himself as Sallah ShabatiHaim Topol, then a young man and of Ashkenazi heritage, plays the old Sephardic manipulator with such consummate skill that even aged immigrants from Morocco and Tunisia were convinced that he was one of them.

Topol’s first film appearance was in the 1961 film I Like Mike, followed by the 1963 Israeli film El Dorado. His breakthrough role came as the lead character in the 1964 film Sallah Shabati. Adapted for the screen by Ephraim Kishon from his original play, the social satire depicts the hardships of a Mizrahi Jewish immigrant family in Israel in the 1950s, satirizing “just about every pillar of Israeli society: the Ashkenazi establishment, the pedantic bureaucracy, corrupt political parties, rigid kibbutz ideologues and … the Jewish National Fund‘s tree-planting program”. Topol, who was 29 during the filming, was familiar playing the role of the family patriarch, having performed skits from the play with his Nahal entertainment troupe during his army years.[3][10]He contributed his own ideas for the part, playing the character as a more universal Sephardi Jew instead of specifically a YemeniteIraqi, or Moroccan Jew, and asking Kishon to change the character’s first name from Saadia (a recognizably Yemenite name) to Sallah (a more general Mizrahi name).

The film won the Golden Globe Award for Best Foreign Language Film, and Topol won the 1964 Golden Gate Award for Best Actor at the San Francisco International Film Festival and the 1965 Golden Globe for Most Promising Newcomer—Male.[3][9][10][16]Sallah Shabati was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, losing to the Italian-language Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.

In 1966, Topol made his English-language film debut as Abou Ibn Kaqden in the Mickey Marcus biopic Cast a Giant Shadow.

Topol came to greatest prominence in his portrayal of Tevye the Dairyman on stage and screen. He first played the lead role in the Israeli production of the musical Fiddler on the Roofin 1966, replacing Shmuel Rodensky for 10 weeks when Rodensky fell ill.[3] Harold Prince, producer of the original Fiddler on the Roof that opened on Broadway in 1964, had seen Topol in Sallah Shabati and called him to audition for the role of the fifty-something Tevye in a new production scheduled to open at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London on February 16, 1967.  Not yet fluent in English, Topol memorized the score from the Broadway cast album and learned the lyrics with a British native. When Topol arrived at the audition, Prince was surprised that this 30-year-old man had played Shabati, a character in his sixties. Topol explained, “A good actor can play an old man, a sad face, a happy man. Makeup is not an obstacle”.  Topol also surprised the producers with his familiarity with the staging, since he had already acted in the Israeli production, and was hired.  He spent six months in London learning his part phonetically with vocal coach Cicely Berry. Jerome Robbins, director and choreographer of the 1964 Broadway show who came over to direct the London production, “re-directed” the character of Tevye for Topol and helped the actor deliver a less caricatured performance. Topol’s performance received positive reviews.

A few months after the opening, Topol was called up for reserve duty in the Six-Day War and returned to Israel. He was assigned to an army entertainment troupe on the Golan Heights. Afterward he returned to the London production, appearing in a total of 430 performances.

It was during the London run that he began being known by his last name only, as the English producers were unable to pronounce the voiceless uvular fricative consonant Ḥet at the beginning of his first name, Chaim, instead calling him “Shame”. Chaim Topol breathed life into Tevye.

In casting the 1971 film version of Fiddler on the Roof, director Norman Jewison and his production team sought an actor other than Zero Mostel for the lead role. This decision was a controversial one, as Mostel had made the role famous in the long-running Broadway musical and wanted to star in the film.  But Jewison and his team felt Mostel would eclipse the character with his larger-than-life personality.  Jewison flew to London in February 1968 to see Topol perform as Tevye during his last week with the London production, and chose him over Danny KayeHerschel BernardiRod SteigerDanny ThomasWalter MatthauRichard Burton, and Frank Sinatra, who had also expressed interest in the part.

Then 36 years old, Topol was made to look 20 years older and 30 pounds (14 kg) heavier with makeup and costuming.[5] As in his role as Shabati, Topol used the technique of “locking his muscles” to convincingly play an older character. He later explained:

As a young man, I had to make sure that I didn’t break the illusion for the audience. You have to tame yourself. I’m now someone who is supposed to be 50, 60 years old. I cannot jump. I cannot suddenly be young. You produce a certain sound [in your voice] that is not young.

For his performance, Topol won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, the Sant Jordi Award for Best Performance in a Foreign Film, and the 1972 David di Donatello for Best Foreign Actor, sharing the latter with Elizabeth Taylor. He was also nominated for the 1971 Academy Award for Best Actor, losing to Gene Hackman in The French Connection.

In 1983 Topol reprised the role of Tevye in a revival of Fiddler on the Roof in West End theatre. In 1989, he played the role in a 30-city U.S. touring production. As he was by then the approximate age of the character, he commented, “I didn’t have to spend the energy playing the age”.  In 1990–1991, he again starred as Tevye in a Broadway revival of Fiddlerat the Gershwin Theatre. In 1991, he was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical, losing to Jonathan Pryce in Miss Saigon. Topol again played Tevye in a 1994 London revival,which became a touring production. In that production, the role of one of his daughters was played by his own daughter, Adi Topol Margalith.

Topol reprised the role of Tevye for a 1997–1998 touring production in Israel, as well as a 1998 show at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne. In September 2005 he returned to Australia for a Fiddler on the Roof revival at the Capitol Theatre in Sydney, followed by an April 2006 production at the Lyric Theatre in Brisbane  and a June 2006 production at Her Majesty’s Theatre in Melbourne. In May 2007, he starred in a production in the Auckland Civic Theatre.

On January 20, 2009, Topol began a farewell tour of Fiddler on the Roof as Tevye, opening in Wilmington, Delaware. He was forced to withdraw from the tour in Boston owing to a shoulder injury, and was replaced by Theodore Bikel and Harvey Fierstein, both of whom had portrayed Tevye on Broadway.Topol estimated that he performed the role more than 3,500 times.

In 1976, Topol played the lead role of the baker, Amiable, in the new musical The Baker’s Wife, but was fired after eight months by producer David Merrick. In her autobiography, Patti LuPone, his co-star in the production, claimed that Topol had behaved unprofessionally on stage and had a strained relationship with her off-stage. The show’s composer, Stephen Schwartz, claimed that Topol’s behavior greatly disturbed the cast and directors and resulted in the production not reaching Broadway as planned.  In 1988, Topol starred in the title role in Ziegfeld at the London Palladium. He returned to the London stage in 2008 in the role of Honoré, from Maurice Chevalier‘s 1958 film Gigi.

Topol appeared in more than 30 films in Israel and abroad. Among his notable English-language appearances are the title role in Galileo (1975), Dr. Hans Zarkov in Flash Gordon(1980), and Milos Columbo in the James Bond film For Your Eyes Only (1981). He was said to be Israel’s “only internationally-recognized entertainer” in the 1960s through 1980s.

In Israel, Topol acted in and produced dozens of films and television series. As a voice artist, he dubbed the Hebrew-language versions of The Jungle Book and two films in the Harry Potter film series. He is also a playwright and screenwriter.

He was featured on two BBC One programs, the six-part series Topol’s Israel (1985) and earlier It’s Topol (1968).  A Hebrew-language documentary of his life, Chaim Topol – Life as a Film, aired on Israel’s Channel 1 in 2011, featuring interviews with his longtime actor friends in Israel and abroad.

baritone, Topol recorded several singles and albums, including film soundtracks, children’s songs, and Israeli war songs. His albums include Topol With Roger Webb And His Orchestra – Topol ’68 (1967), Topol Sings Israeli Freedom Songs (1967), War Songs By Topol (1968), and Topol’s Israel (1984). He appeared on the soundtrack albums for the film production of Fiddler on the Roof (1971) and the television production of The Going Up Of David Lev (2010).

His autobiography, Topol by Topol, was published in London by Weindenfel and Nicholson (1981). He also authored To Life! (1994) and Topol’s Treasury of Jewish Humor, Wit and Wisdom (1995).

Topol has illustrated approximately 25 books in both Hebrew and English.He has also produced drawings of Israeli national figures. His sketches of Israeli presidents were reproduced in a 2013 stamp series issued by the Israel Philatelic Federation, as was his self-portrait as Tevye for a 2014 commemorative stamp marking the 50th anniversary of the Broadway debut of Fiddler on the Roof.

In 1967, Topol founded Variety Israel, an organization serving children with special needs. He is also a co-founder and chairman of the board of Jordan River Village, a year-round camp for Arab and Jewish children with life-threatening illnesses, which opened in 2012.

Topol was a recipient of Israel’s Kinor David award in arts and entertainment in 1964. He received a Best Actor award from the San Sebastián International Film Festival for his performance in the 1972 film Follow Me! In 2008, he was named an Outstanding Member of the Israel Festival for his contribution to Israeli culture.

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Clive Revill

Clive Revill. Wikipedia.

Clive S elsby Revill (born 18 April 1930) is a New Zealand singercharacter actor, and voice artist best known for his performances in musical theatre and on the London stage.

Revill was born in WellingtonNew Zealand, the son of Eleanor May (née Neel) and Malet Barford Revill. He attended Rongotai College.

He originally trained to be an accountant in New Zealand, but decided to change his career path in 1950 when he made his stage debut as Sebastian in Twelfth Night. He moved to London in 1950 and studied acting there at the Old Vic Theatre. He appeared in The Shakespeare Memorial Theatre Company‘s celebrated 1956–1958 season of productions in Stratford, which included HamletLove’s Labour’s LostThe Merchant of VeniceJulius Caesar and The Tempest. He went on to have such varied stage roles as Bob (narrator) in Irma la Douce, Ratty in Toad of Toad Hall and Jean-Paul Marat in Marat/Sade.

He made his Broadway debut in 1952, playing Sam Weller in The Pickwick Papers, and subsequently appeared in Irma La DouceThe Incomparable Max and Oliver!, for which his Fagin was nominated for a Tony Award. He is also known for his roles in the operettas of Gilbert and Sullivan, on both stage and television. He starred in the first national tour of the musical Drood, replacing George Rose, who was murdered during the run.

He also participated in the workshop production of Tom Jones: The Musical, playing the role of Squire Western and reprising it on the cast recording.

His red hair and distinctive Mr. Punch-like features often saw him cast as comic eccentrics in a number of British films of the 1960s and 1970s such as Kaleidoscope (1966), Modesty Blaise (1966), The Double Man (1967), Fathom (1967), The Assassination Bureau (1969), A Severed Head (1970), The Black Windmill (1974) and One of Our Dinosaurs Is Missing(1975). He also had notable supporting turns in Otto Preminger‘s Bunny Lake Is Missing (1965) opposite Laurence Olivier, and his American film debut A Fine Madness (1966), as well as a rare leading role in the horror film The Legend of Hell House (1973).

He was often cast as humorous foreign characters (he has played everything from Chinese to Russian). Two of his highest profile roles of this kind were in two films for Billy WilderThe Private Life of Sherlock Holmes (1970) and Avanti! (1972), for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for his part as put-upon hotel manager Carlo Carlucci.

In the 1978 television miniseries Centennial, he played the Scottish accountant Finlay Perkin. He played both Ko-Ko (the starring role) in The Mikado, and the title character, John Wellington Wells, in The Sorcerer for the Brent Walker television series of Gilbert and Sullivan productions, shown by the BBC in 1983.

After relocating to the United States, he guest-starred in many television series, such as Columbo (1978, “The Conspirators”),  Hart to HartDynastyMagnum, P.I.The Love BoatRemington SteeleMurder, She WroteBabylon 5The Feather and Father GangNewhartMacGyverDear JohnThe Fall GuyMaude, and Star Trek: The Next Generation. He starred as the wizard Vector in the short-lived series Wizards and Warriors.

Revill is known for his proficiency with accents.  He is also known for his voice work in feature-length films and animated series, which includes Alfred Pennyworth in the first three episodes of Batman: The Animated Series, the voice of Chico in the seven episodes of Chico the Rainmaker (The Boy with the Two Heads) (1974), the voice of Emperor Palpatine/Darth Sidious in the original 1980 version of The Empire Strikes Back (he was later replaced by Ian McDiarmid in the 2004 DVD version though Revill is still credited) numerous cartoons such as The TransformersBatman: The Animated Series and DuckTales and more video games, including Marvel: Ultimate Alliance and Conquest: Frontier Wars

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Mai Tai Sing

Mai Tai Sing (December 22, 1923 – July 11, 2018) was an American actress and businesswoman. Her acting credits include the TV series Hong KongForbidden, and Strange Portrait.

She was born in Oakland, California as May Tsang. Most of her young years were in Hong Kong. When she was about fourteen, she and her family moved back to the California Bay area. One of her early jobs was waitressing at the Forbidden City nightclub. It was there she became interested in performing.

In the early 1940s, she became a chorus girl there. She met Wilbur and Jessie Tai Sing, a dancing duo. Later she replaced Jessie. By 1942, she was married to Wilbur Tai Sing and had two children to him.

In the 1960s she became romantically involved with actor Jeffrey Hunter. An article in The Milwaukee Sentinel said that they were to be married. At this time they had been working together in the film Strange Portrait. In the 1970s she relocated to Hawaii.

In 1953, she appeared in a film with Tony Curtis, playing the part of Soo Lee.[6] Forbidden was directed by Rudolf Mate. Other cast included Joanne Dru and Victor Sen Yung. Her last film role was in the ill-fated Strange Portrait that starred Jeffry Hunter. In this film she played a wealthy but reclusive and insane woman living alone in a mansion who has an obsession with a portrait of her husband that had abandoned her.

In the 1950s she appeared in two episodes of The New Adventures of China Smith aka The Affairs of China Smith which was an action/adventure series about an American adventurer living in Singapore. The main role was played by Dan Duryea.  In the early 1960s had a recurring role as Ching Mei in the series Hong Kong.  She played the owner of The Golden Dragon, a supper club. The cast included Rod Taylor and Lloyd Bochner.

She would also host Charlie Chan films on channel 44, a local San Francisco television station.

She had an association with clubs that goes back to the 1940s as a chorus girl, she would eventually end up in management. One of the clubs that she ran was The Rickshaw in San Francisco. That club is known for a night when John LennonRingo Starr and Billy Prestonstopped by.

She moved to Hawaii in the 1970s. Another club she managed was “Trappers”, located in the Hyatt Waikiki. The club featured the Betty Loo Taylor Trio. She was hostess and manager there until her retirement in 2003 at age 79. Her retirement marked 28 years of management and hosting at Trappers and later at the Ciao Mein.

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Jennifer Warren

Jennifer Warren. Wikipedia.

Jennifer Warren (born August 12, 1941) is an American actress and film director.

She was born in the Greenwich Village section of New York City, the daughter of actress Paula Bauersmith and Dr. Barnet M. Warren, a dentist. Her uncle was Yiddish theatre actor and director Jacob Ben-Ami. Warren graduated from Elisabeth Irwin High School

Warren made her Broadway debut in 1972 in 6 Rms Riv Vu, for which she won a Theatre World Award. She appeared in the short-lived P.S. Your Cat Is Dead!. Warren’s film credits include Sam’s Song (1969), Night Moves (1975), Slap Shot (1977, as the frustrated wife of hockey coach Paul Newman), Another Man, Another Chance (1977), Ice Castles (1978), Mutant (1984), and Fatal Beauty (1987). She was listed as one of the 12 “Promising New Actors of 1975” in John Willis’ Screen World, Volume 27. She also played a role in Steel Cowboy (1978). Her television credits include guest roles on The Bob Newhart ShowKojakCagney & LaceyHotelHoopermanMurder, She Wrote, and others. She had a featured role as Dinah Caswell, a former model and mother of an aspiring model in the 1982 TV movie Paper Dolls, and the 1984 television series based on the movie. 

Although best known as an actress in film, television, and theater, Warren was accepted into the Directing Workshop for Women at the American Film Institute, where she directed the short film Point of Departure and received the Cine Golden Eagle Award, Best Drama at Aspen Film Festival, and then opened the season for the Arts and Entertainment Channel on its World Premiere Short Film Series. Two years later, she formed Tiger Rose Productions, and coproduced the short documentary You Don’t Have to Die, which won the Academy Award in 1989, as well as the Cable Ace Award.

About that same time, Warren began to develop The Beans of Egypt, Maine, a feature film, which she directed for American Playhouse and Live Entertainment. The film was selected as Best Pick of both the Seattle and Boston film festivals. It was invited into competition at the San Sebastian Film Festival and gathered wide critical acclaim and two Independent Film Spirit Award Nominations upon its release in 1994. It appeared on PBS for the American Playhouse series the following year.

Warren finished production on Partners in Crime, her second directorial feature, starring Rutger Hauer and Paulina Porizkova, in 1998. The film was distributed in America by Artisan Films during the 1999/2000 year and appeared on Direct TV. A member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Women in Film, she was a founding member and past president of the Alliance of Woman Directors and continues to support the organization. She has taught at Wesleyan University, Johns Hopkins University, UCLA Extension, and the University of Tel Aviv. She is an Associate Professor at USC‘s School of Cinematic Arts.

Warren married producer Roger Gimbel in 1976. They had a son, Barney, who is a writer and editor.  Roger Gimbel died April 26, 2011.

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Ray Fearon

Ray Fearon. Wikipedia.

Raymond Fearon is a British actor who has worked extensively in theatre, and is known for playing garage mechanic Nathan Harding on ITV‘s long-running soap opera Coronation Street.

Fearon was born in London, England, the son of West Indian parents, with 7 brothers and sisters. He was a promising junior tennis player in his early teens.

After studying drama at Rose Bruford College of speech and drama, Fearon went on to make his reputation as a stage actor, working at Liverpool‘s Everyman Theatre; Manchester Contact Theatre; Manchester Royal ExchangeOxford Playhouse; Barn Theatre, Kent; The Almeida; The Crucible, Sheffield; The Donmar Warehouse; The Royal Shakespeare Theatres in Stratford and the National Theatre. He has also toured in the United States and Europe and the Far East.

He starred in Othello—opposite Gillian Kearney‘s Desdemona— in Liverpool at the age of 24, becoming the first black actor to play Othello on RSC main stages for over 40 years.[1][2]His other early stage roles included Charles Surface in The School for Scandal; Betty/Martin in Cloud Nine; Longaville in Love’s Labour’s Lost; Ferdinand in The Tempest; and Pete in Blues for Mr Charlie.

His early theatre work in London included Hugo/Frederick in Ring Round the Moon at the Lilian Baylis Theatre; the title role in The Invisible Man (his one-man show) at the Bridewell Theatre; and Pierre in Venice Preserv’d at the Almeida.

He has worked extensively with the Royal Shakespeare Company in their Stratford and London theatres and on tour. He was the first black actor to play the title role in Othello in the main Royal Shakespeare theatre (director Michael Attenborough, 1999) giving a powerful and sexy performance alongside Richard McCabe’s strong and repressed Iago.[3] They also played opposite one another in 1996’s The White Devil (Deborah Warner, Swan theatre) where he played Brachiano and McCabe the villain Flamineo. Fearon was directed by Attenborough also as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet (RSC, Swan Theatre, 1997) alongside Zoe Waites as Juliet.

Other RSC roles have included the First Knight and First Tempter in Murder in the Cathedral (Swan, 1993), Stubb in Moby Dick (TOP, 1993), the Prince of Morocco in The Merchant of Venice (RST, 1994), Paris in Troilus and Cressida (Ian Judge, RST, 1996), the Marquis of Posa in Don Carlos (1999), Pericles in Adrian Noble‘s Pericles, Prince of Tyre (RST and Roundhouse, 2002) and Mark Antony in Julius Caesar (2012).

In 2003, he played ‘Oberon’ in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Sheffield‘s Crucible Theatre. In 2004, he appeared in as Jean Kiyabe in World Music by Steve Waters at the Donmar Warehouse, and in the same year at the National Theatre as Mark in Sing Yer Hearts Out for the Lads by Roy Williams.

In 2010, he starred as Walter Lee Younger in A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry. This critically acclaimed production was directed by Michael Buffong at the Royal Exchange, Manchester.

In July 2013 he played Macduff opposite Kenneth Branagh (as Macbeth) and Alex Kingston (as Lady Macbeth) in Macbeth at Manchester International Festival. His performance was broadcast to cinemas on 20 July as part of National Theatre Live.[4]

In December 2017 he played Nathan Detroit in Guys and Dolls at the Royal Exchange, Manchester. The production was directed by Michael Buffong.

Fearon played Nathan Harding in Coronation Street and in 2001 he appeared in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (as Firenze the centaur). He had a minor role as a sentry in Kenneth Branagh’s 1996 film version of Hamlet.

He was in the 2006 series of Strictly Come Dancing, partnered by Camilla Dallerup, and was voted out in week 6.

He also appeared as a fictionalised version of historical figure Carlo de’ Medici on the Starz series Da Vinci’s Demons, which ran from 2013-2015.

In 2019, Fearon played the role of Hot Misogynist in season two of the acclaimed BBC Three comedy-drama Fleabag

In the BBC’s 2003 radio adaptation of His Dark Materials, Fearon appeared as the narrator and as the angel Balthamos.

Fearon has a daughter, Rosa May.

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Fredric March & Florence Eldridge

Fredric March obituary in “Los Angeles Times” in 1976.

Fredric March, a two-time Academy Award winner whose stage and film acting career spanned more than half a century, died Monday at Mt. Sinai Hospital.

March was 77 and had been in semi-retirement for several years. His agent, Phil Gersh, said the cause of death was cancer, for which March had been under treatment since his last motion picture appearance in Eugene O’Neill’s “The Iceman Cometh” two years ago.

Florence Eldridge, March’s frequent stage and film costar and wife of 47 years, was at his bedside when he died.

One of the world’s most respected and honored performers, March won Oscars for his 1932 title role in “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” splitting the award on a tie vote with Wallace Beery in “The Champ,” and again for his 1946 characterization of a middle-aged banker returning from World War II in “The Best Years of Our Lives.”

Although both he and Miss Eldridge had “officially” retired from acting more than two decades ago, March had been repeatedly lured back to the stage and films by roles he liked and wanted.

He won a Golden Globe award in 1952 for screen performance as the bemused and empty Willie Loman in the screen version of “Death of a Salesman.”

Born Frederick McIntyre Bickel, Aug. 31, 1897, in Racine, Wis., March was the son of a manufacturer and had always been intended for a banker’s career.

He was president of his graduating class at Winslow Grammer School in Racine and president of the senior class at Racine High School, where he graduated at 16. He had begun working as a part-time teller when World War I intervened.

Discharged in 1920 as a second lieutenant of artillery, March obtained his bachelor’s degree at the University of Wisconsin—where he was again elected senior class president—and was working at a New York City bank when an attack of appendicitis put him in bed for a month.

“It was,” he said later in life, “the luckiest illness of a lifetime. It gave me a while to think.”

What he thought about was acting. He had appeared in college and high school dramatics and had produced amateur shows in Racine since he was eight years old.

As soon as he was able to leave his bed he also left the banking profession (“You could say I returned to it briefly in ‘Best Years of Our Lives.’ ” he mused later) and began to haunt the New York theaters.

Again, luck was with him. In less than two months he had a job; he was part of a mob scene in the David Belasco production of “Deburau,” and by the end of the play’s run had become assistant stage manager and understudy to the star.

A handsome 6-footer with a winning smile, March found he could augment his slim acting income by posing for commercial artists and photographers, capitalizing a bit on his much-remarked resemblance to matinee idol John Barrymore.

“But I knew I wasn’t a trained actor,” he said. “And when I was given a chance to join a stock company in the West, I took it.”

The decision was fortunate in more than one way: he gained invaluable experience, performing everything from juvenile leads to old men—and he met Miss Eldridge. They were married in Mexico May 30, 1927.

Another lucky chance, according to March, was his decision to join the touring company of “The Royal Family” instead of accepting a somewhat more financially attractive Broadway offer the following year.

Los Angeles was on the show’s tour schedule, and March got his first film role, a bit part in the silent film “Paying The Piper,” and then another in “The Dummy.” 

It was the advent of talking pictures, however, that finally brought him back to Hollywood in 1928 to begin his climb to international fame. He was in the film version of “The Royal Family” in 1928.

“I was lucky,” he recalled. “I got a five-year contract because someone had the notion that only stage actors could talk. It was the biggest break of all, maybe . . .”

In less than a decade, he was one of the top-earning actors of the era with an annual income of more than $300,000.

He also had made Hollywood history by turning down Darryl Zanuck when the studio chief proposed that he sign another five-year contract. March said he wanted to make his own deals from then on—and wanted to do some stage acting, too.

“When I left Zanuck,” he said, “he told me I couldn’t get anywhere without a big studio behind me. On the whole, though, I think I proved my point.”

He did. But not without a little trouble. He had co-financed his first post-studio production, a stage play that flopped because the juvenile lead came down with measles.

“That was Montgomery Clift,” March said. “He was a wonderful actor, even then. But, heaven help us, he was only about 15 or 16! When his mother called and said he was down with measles on opening night, we almost died. And the whole show did a week later.

“Monty had exposed everyone, and half the cast was sick.”

Undaunted, March returned to Hollywood for more starring roles, making an average of one picture a year and spending the rest of his time in stage work.

In films, he was originally confined to roles as suave leading men in romantic comedies. But he broke with tradition to win his first Oscar as the diabolical Mr. Hyde and defied standard casting techniques to play the alcoholic husband of Janet Gaynor in “A Star Is Born.”

By the 1940s, his forte was more serious portrayals—such as the father in Thornton Wilder’s “The Skin of Our Teeth” (Again with Montgomery Clift) and stage roles in “Years Ago,” “A Bell for Adano,” and “Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep.”

In addition, he appeared in such film successes as “The Sign of the Cross,” “Anthony Adverse,” “Les Miserables,” “The Barretts of Wimpole Street,” “Death Takes a Holiday,” “Tomorrow, the World!” “The Dark Angel,” “The Adventures of Mark Twain” and “The Middle of the Night.”

One of his favorite roles was as the aging and opinionated William Jennings Bryan opposite his old friend Spencer Tracy, in “Inherit the Wind.”

He also performed in television, moving to the new medium with a role as Scrooge in “A Christmas Carol,” one of the first big network color telecasts.

He recent years, despite his occasional emergences to work on stage or screen, March spent increasing time at his farm in New Milford, Conn., where he liked to perform the farm chores and clear land himself.

“I’m not really great with an ax,” he told a friend recently. “But I’m energetic.”

In addition to his wife, March leaves two adopted children, Penelope March Fantacci of Florence, Italy, and Anthony March of Texas.

March’s business manager said no funeral service is planned.

Florence Eldridge. Wikipedia.

Florence Eldridge was born on September 5, 1901, in Brooklyn, New York – August 1, 1988, in Long Beach, California) was an American actress. She was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Lead Actress in Play in 1957 for her performance in Long Day’s Journey into Night.

The daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles J. McKechnie,  Eldridge was born Florence McKechnie in Brooklyn. She attended public schools, including P.S. 85 and Girls’ High School.

Eldridge made her Broadway debut at age 17 as a chorus member of Rock-a-Bye Baby at the Astor Theatre. The reference book American Theatre: A Chronicle of Comedy and Drama, 1930-1969 noted, “In the 1920s she won major attention in such plays as The Cat and the Canary and Six Characters in Search of an Author.”[5]

In 1965, husband Fredric March and she did a world tour under the auspices of the U.S. State Department. Eldridge wrote that they were “experimenting to see if an acting couple doing excerpts from plays on a bare stage could reach and appeal to a worldwide audience.”[6]

On March 19, 1921, Eldridge married Howard Rumsey, who owned the Empire Theater and the Knickerbocker Players (both in Syracuse) and the Manhattan Players of Rochester. They were wed at her aunt’s home in Maplewood, New Jersey.

She was married to Fredric March from 1927 until his death in 1975, and appeared alongside him on stage and in films. Like her husband, she was a liberal Democrat.

She died of a heart attack aged 86. She was buried alongside her husband at the March Estate in New Milford, Connecticut.