The original 1970s Dark Shadows movies
This is an early Totie on The Ed Sullivan Show in the 1960s where she made her national TV debut. She became a big draw in Las Vegas after routines like this in primetime and on the Carson Tonight show.
Here's another Sullivan show where Totie made her mark in stand up comedy.
Here she is on the Dean Martin Roast of Lucille Ball reading prepared material but her delivery was one of a kind.
Totie Fields gets Punked on Tattletales where stars appeared with their spouses. But you can't prank Totie, she's too fast.
Say what you will about how cheesy those 70s game shows were there was some astonishingly good entertainment at times. Totie especially always had a new or mostly new set when she made one of her frequent appearances on The Mike Douglas Show, Dinah and The Merv Griffin Show.
In 1976 Totie had her left leg amputated and lost a breast to cancer but she took it in stride, in public at least, and was funnier than ever talking about her maladies. Sadly she passed away in 1978 never having fully recovered from her first operation. She was only 48 years old.
Tuesday, July 31, 2012 - 11:16am
My memory of working with 1980's porn star Johnny Harden. Gene Carrier aka Johnny Harden made news in 2011 when he claimed to be the biological father of Ashton Kutcher, Josh Harnett, Robbie Williams and porn star Brent Corrigan. He told Corrigan (who's mother denied the story), "I did do a DNA test with Ashton and it checked out." He also announced a planned return to gay porn movies this year.
Tuesday, July 31, 2012 - 10:48am
The story behind 'Minnie's Boys', the flop musical based on The Marx Brothers.
Is it too soon to joke about the Colorada massacre? Dane Cook doesn't think so (I don't either) “So I heard that the guy came into the theater about 25 minutes into the movie. And I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie, but the movie is pretty much a piece of crap… Yeah, spoiler alert. And I know that if none of that would have happened, I’m pretty sure that somebody in that theater, about 25 minutes in, realizing it was a piece of crap, probably was like, ‘Ugh f—king shoot me.’”
ABC is worried that their hit show Modern Family won't have the original cast when it returns for year four. September is coming soon and everyone is holding out for more money. I suspect they get it but some cast members are suing to get out of their contracts. Nice tactic!
Sunday, July 29, 2012 - 11:45am
WILLIAM SHATNER CONQUERS ALL!
Shatner and his Star Trek co-star are not exactly known as close friends but here they are on stage together talking goodnaturedly about filming the series. This was filmed at a 25th anniversary convention. I guess that would be 1991.
A rookie voice director has the nerve to give William Shatner a line reading and the session descends into a real nightmare for the poor guy. He should have know better!
Shatner and Nimoy again in a skit for the Comedy Central Roast of William Shatner, if you haven't seen it it's hilarious.
The brilliant Ben Folds produced this dynamite version of 'Common People' and Shatner really sells it. What other TV star got so much mileage out of his career? He's a bigger star now than he ever was.
Friday, July 27, 2012 - 10:47am
Mitchell Hadley: Wanted to put in a couple of shameless plugs for It's About TV!, my new all-TV blog. I've been doing a feature each Saturday, called "This Week in TV Guide," where I take an issue from my modest collection, anywhere from the late 50s to the mid 70s, and look at what was in the issue for this week. It might concentrate on the listings themselves - what was on back then that we might be interested in - or it could focus on one (or more) of the feature articles, looking at a developing cultural trend. Here's the link to this past week's piece as an example.
Weigel Broadcasting Co. and Hearst Television announced today an affiliation agreement in which five additional Hearst markets will carry Me-TV. Those local stations will be WCVB, Boston; KCRA, Sacramento; WBAL, Baltimore; KOCO, Oklahoma City and WXII, Greensboro. This brings the total of Hearst’s Me-TV affiliates to 13. In addition, Hearst has extended its commitment to the network with the renewal of its existing Me-TV affiliate agreements to 2015.
Weird but fun star filled hour special for (I think) Saturday morning - Sid & Marty Krofft present Fol-de-Rol (1971) with Cyd Charisse, Howard Cosell, Totie Fields, Milt Kamen, Guy Marks, Ricky Nelson, Mickey Rooney, Ann Sothern, Yma Sumac, Billy Barty, Monte Landis, Robert Shields and Lynn Thigpen.
Thursday, July 26, 2012 - 9:33am
Rita Moreno is one of my favorite actresses, she reflects on her career here. She looks fantastic!
Friday, July 20, 2012 - 6:23am
PAST & FUTURE
The Hobbit preview at Comic Con was a huge smash hit.
Jackson shot "The Hobbit" in 3-D and at 48 frames a second, twice the speed that has been the standard since the 1920s. The higher frame rate allows for greater visual clarity, though it requires costly upgrades to digital projectors for cinemas showing films at that speed.
It's only a matter of time before Marvel implodes, and I suspect that moment is coming soon if they proceed with Antman and Gaurdians of the Galaxy movies, odd choices sure to be a flop. Personally a Jim Steranko inspired Nick Fury Agent of SHEILD set in the 1960s would be a better idea.
HEY! If you don't follow my facebook page for PUNK you're missing out on retro LA fun!
Sunday, July 15, 2012 - 11:58am
A couple of years ago in a second hand bookstore I bought Pearl Bailey's book 'The Raw Pearl' published in 1968 when she was on Broadway with Hello Dolly. When I got it home I noticed it was autographed and a flyer from the play was inside, apparently you could buy autographed copies in the lobby, I'm guessing, and this was one of those books. The small flyer read: At this performance the role of Ambrose Kemper is played by Donald Coleman.
Pearl recorded some amazing albums, here she performs 'Don't Like Goodbyes' from House of Flowers.
Whenever Pearl was given an hour long variety special you could be assured of a blast with stellar guest stars. This is from 1971 with Bing Crosby, Louis Armstrong and Andy Williams.
Here's Pearlie Mae and husband / orchestra leader Louis Bellson in concert from the seventies.
Andy Williams is one of the smoothest singers and his variety series in the 1960s brought out the best in his guests and that's certainly true of Pearl Bailey. A very refreshing version of 'The Simple Life.'
Saturday, July 14, 2012 - 11:38am
THE ONE THE ONLY
This is one of Groucho's later appearances, at the Friars roast of Johnny Carson in 1968, note John Wayne is on the dais. The Friars Roasts have been collected on DVD at classicfriarsroasts.com, I would love to have those (it's a subscription thing). The Friars Roasts were more pure than the Dean Martin shows, more authentic and you have the great comedians all at the top of their games, as opposed to the Martin Roasts where you had aging stars like Jack Benny on their last legs.
This is weird and wonderful - Groucho and Truman Capote on The Dick Cavett Show. Bring back The Dick Cavett Show!
Here's a sample chapter from my new book PUNK. This section is all about the New Wave group Missing Persons and how they became the first MTV superstars. I have some edgy music from the eighties, book excerpts and other mind-numbing entertainment on my PUNK Facebook page.
Ernest Borgnine has died. What a massive talent he was.
Monday, July 9, 2012 - 5:38am
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